PAK vs NZ: Shaheen Afridi set to miss first two T20Is

The Pakistan vs New Zealand series begins on April 18

April 15, 2024
Shaheen Afridi. - File/PCB

KARACHI: Pakistan’s star pacer Shaheen Afridi could miss the first two T20Is of the upcoming five-match series against New Zealand on home soil, Geo News reported on Monday.

According to sources, the decision to rest Shaheen has been taken as part of the team’s rotation policy, ahead of the T20 World Cup this year, in order to manage the players’ workload.

Shaheen could be on the sidelines for the initial matches in Rawalpindi but will feature in the final three matches of the series.

It must be noted that Shaheen was recently removed as captain of the T20I side and was replaced by Babar Azam.

The PCB said that the change was “a strategic move aimed at ensuring player well-being and peak performance”.

“While Shaheen Afridi has undeniably proven himself as a star fast bowler, leading Pakistan’s pace attack over the years, the board recognises the importance of rotation and rest to maintain his peak performance. This decision aligns with board's commitment to safeguarding the longevity of the players, especially fast bowlers given their injury timelines in the past two years,” the PCB added.

“Keeping in mind workload management, this decision is to ensure Pakistan main bowlers remain at the top of their game. The board does not want the national men’s team to run into injury crisis concerning the bowling resoucres as seen before the ICC T20 World Cup 2022, where Shaheen had to bee closely looked after and ICC ODI Cricket World Cup 2023, where the team didn’t have the services of Naseem Shah.”

New Zealand's squad touched down in Islamabad on Sunday, meanwhile Pakistan team has also assembled in the federal capital after Eid-ul-Fitr holidays.

Pakistan squad

Babar Azam (c), Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Saim Ayub, Usman Khan, Iftikhar Ahmed, Azam Khan (wk), Imad Wasim, Shadab Khan, Shaheen Afridi, Naseem Shah, Mohammad Amir, Abbas Afridi, Abrar Ahmed, Fakhar Zaman, Irfan Khan Niazi, Usama Mir, Zaman Khan

Reserves: Haseebullah, Mohammad Ali, Agha Salman, Sahibzada Farhan, Mohammad Wasim Jr.

New Zealand squad

Michael Bracewell (c), Mark Chapman, Josh Clarkson, Jacob Duffy, Dean Foxcroft, Ben Lister, Cole McConchie, Jimmy Neesham, Will O’Rourke, Tim Robinson, Ben Sears, Tim Seifert (WK), Ish Sodhi, Tom Blundell, Zak Foulkes.

Pakistan vs New Zealand T20I series schedule

April 18 — 1st T20I, Rawalpindi

April 20 — 2nd T20I, Rawalpindi

April 21 — 3rd T20I, Rawalpindi

April 25 — 4th T20I, Lahore

April 27 — 5th T20I, Lahore


    Anwar Baig commented a month ago

    Wise decision to keep Shaheen Afridi on Side line. His bowling is Teer or Tukka This will save lot of unnatural runs.

    Anwar Baig commented a month ago

    Pakistani team shouldn't underestimate the young Newzeland players. Also use spin bowler in the starting.