NZ vs PAK: Shadab Khan ruled out of first Test; replacement announced

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Shadab Khan (Image Source: Twitter)
  • Shadab Khan set to miss the Test series opener against New Zealand due to injury.

  • The first Test begins from December 26 in Mount Maunganui.

Pakistan all-rounder Shadab Khan will miss the first Test against New Zealand as he has been ruled out due to a thigh injury. The Test series against Black Caps starts with a Boxing Day contest at the Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui.

Shadab had earlier missed the white-ball series against Zimbabwe with a groin injury but had recovered in time for the New Zealand tour. His problem increased during a Christchurch tour game, but he was cleared to lead Pakistan in the T20I series against the Kiwis.

Now, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has confirmed that Shadab has complained about the pain in his left thigh and he won’t be available for selection for at least seven more days.

Zafar Gohar comes in as a replacement for Shadab

In place of Shadab, the left-arm spinner, Zafar Gohar, has been included in the squad.

“Shadab will now undergo MRI scans in Tauranga on Thursday, following which a further update on the exact nature of the injury and time needed to return to competitive cricket will be provided,” a PCB release stated as quoted by Cricbuzz.

“Zafar has joined the Test side from Hamilton where he was preparing with the Pakistan Shaheens for Sunday’s T20 match against the Northern Knights,” the release added.

In the 2019-20 season of Quaid-e-Azam Trophy, Gohar was the third-highest wicket-taker with 38 scalps to his name. He has so far taken 144 wickets in 39 first-class matches, at an impressive average of 28.56.

Here is Pakistan’s updated squad:

Mohammad Rizwan (captain for the first Test), Abid Ali, Azhar Ali, Faheem Ashraf, Fawad Alam, Haris Sohail, Imran Butt, Mohammad Abbas, Naseem Shah, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Shaheen Afridi, Shan Masood, Sohail Khan, Yasir Shah and Zafar Gohar.

Note: Babar Azam, Imam-ul-Haq and Shadab are not available for the first Test.

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