Pakistan, who won their last Test assignment in Sri Lanka, will be taking on England in a three-Test series © AFP
Pakistan, who won their last Test assignment in Sri Lanka, will be taking on England in a three-Test series © AFP

Pakistan on Wednesday announced their squad to take on England in a three-match Test series. While there were no surprise selections in Pakistan’s 15-member squad to take on England, there were some notable exclusions in form of Ehsan Adil, Haris Sohail and Babar Azam. The series begins on October 17, and the touring England side will reach the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on September 30. England and Pakistan will also be clashing in a four-match One-Day International (ODI) as well as a three-match Twenty20 International series in the UAE. The last time when England had faced Pakistan in the UAE, the tourists were blanked 3-0 in the Test series. But England found their confidence back as they thrashed Pakistan 4-0 in the ODI series that followed. England also won the three-match T20 series as they bounced back well after defeat in the first game and ended the series with a 2-1 win.

On Tuesday, England included the uncapped pair of opening batsman Alex Hales and off-spinning all-rounder Zafar Ansari in a 16-man Test squad announced Tuesday for their upcoming three-match series against Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates. Hales, who has played white-ball cricket for England, was brought into the Test squad after Adam Lyth was dropped, AFP reported.  ALSO READ: Zafar Ansari dislocates thumb right after England call for Tests vs Pakistan

Pakistan’s chief selector Haroon Rashid was quoted as saying by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) official website: “In the light of Misbah-ul-Haq recommendations, we have kept the options open for the 16th player in the Test squad against England, picking up two left-arm spin bowlers namely Zafar Gohar and Mohammad Asghar for the brace of practice games against England prior to the Test matches in the UAE; whoever amongst the two performs well would be added to the Test squad.” ALSO READ: Alex Hales, Zafar Ansari find place in England Test squad to take on Pakistan

“Besides that, some budding youngsters have been recommended to be included in the Pakistan camp for Zimbabwe tour  to be held from September 17-20, 2015 at Lahore. They are Rumman Raees, Junaid Khan, Mir Hamza, Hassan Ali, Ziaul Haq, Zafar Gohar, Mohammad Asghar, Iftikhar Ahmed of Peshawar and Faisal Mubashir of Bahawalpur.

The press release said the Pakistan selection committee also kept a few points in mind. “(1) Continuity process in the rebuilding phase of the Pakistan team by retaining majority of players who were part of the successful last tour of Sri Lanka. (2) Outstanding performers in the recently concluded Haier T20 National tournament were duly rewarded and have been included in the teams. (3) Players coming out of injuries are recalled and selected in the team. (4) Anwar Ali has been rested for the T20 series against Zimbabwe due to groin strain but would join the team for the ODI series in Zimbabwe after going through rehab at the NCA. (5) Sarfraz Ahmed will not be part of T20 squad against Zimbabwe because he will be performing Haj.”

Pakistan Test squad for three-Test series vs England: Ahmed Shehzad, Shan Masood, Azhar Ali, Mohammad Hafeez, Fawad Alam, Asad Shafiq, Misbah-ul-Haq (c), Younis Khan, Sarfraz Ahmed (wk), Yasir Shah, Zulfiqar Babar, Wahab Riaz, Imran Khan, Rahat Ali, and Junaid Khan.