The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has made a significant announcement regarding their Asia Cup squad, with pacer Naseem Shah being replaced by Zaman Khan due to an injury concern. Naseem Shah suffered a right shoulder injury during Pakistan's Super Four match against India, and the PCB is taking precautions with an eye on the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup.
Zaman Khan, a right-hand pacer with experience in Pakistan's T20I format, has swiftly joined the squad in Sri Lanka. He boasts four wickets in six T20Is, with an average of 32.5 and an economy rate of 6.66.
Meanwhile, pacer Haris Rauf, who didn't bowl on the reserve day of the Super Four game against India, is also under close observation. The PCB update revealed that he is on the path to recovery after experiencing discomfort in his right flank during the initial stages of the match.
Naseem Shah and Haris Rauf are assets for Pakistan
Team doctor Sohail Saleem emphasized the importance of providing the best care to these fast bowlers, considering their significance to the team and the upcoming World Cup.
Zaman Khan who arrived in Sri Lanka this morning have joined the team practice sessions ahead of the knockout game tomorrow. He will replace injured Naseem Shah. #AsiaCup2023 pic.twitter.com/feEFlLiNFu— Nibraz Ramzan (@nibraz88cricket) September 13, 2023
“These two fast bowlers are our assets, and the team's medical panel will provide them the best possible care ahead of the all-important World Cup,” said Dr. Saleem.
Another addition to the squad is expected in the form of pacer Shahnawaz Dahani, who will be joining the team on Thursday morning.
The recent Asia Cup Super Four encounter against India dealt a heavy blow to Pakistan, as they faced their most significant defeat against their arch-rivals in ODIs, losing by a record margin of 228 runs. This loss snapped Pakistan's unbeaten streak in the tournament.
With the points table configurations in the Super Four, Pakistan's next match against Sri Lanka effectively becomes a knockout game for a spot in the Asia Cup final on September 17. India has already secured their place in the final, thanks to their victories against Pakistan and Sri Lanka.