After extensive consultations and a brief delay, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has Friday announced the 15-member squad for the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023.
The highly anticipated national squad for the International Cricket Council (ICC) World Cup 2023 was unveiled today.
Chief Selector Inzamam-ul-Haq made the official announcement during a press conference at 11:15 a.m. -- at Level 2, Far-End Building of Gaddafi Stadium.
While addressing the presser, Inzamam-ul-Haq said: “World Cup is the most important event in any cricketer’s life and I want to congratulate all the cricketers who have made it to the squad through their impressive performances. This team has performed wonderfully well over the last couple of years and that is why we have shown faith in the same bunch.
“I have a firm belief that this squad can bring the World Cup trophy to Pakistan and make the whole nation proud with their incredible performances. It is time to get behind our team and provide them with the backing and support that they need,” he added.
Babar Azam (c), Shadab Khan, Abdullah Shafique, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imam-ul-Haq, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan, Mohammad Wasim Jnr, Salman Ali Agha, Saud Shakeel, Shaheen Shah Afridi and Usama Mir.
Dejected Naseem Shah reacts after being ruled out
Fast bowler Naseem Shah has been replaced with Hasan Ali as he had suffered a shoulder injury during Asia Cup in a match against India on 11 September and was ruled out of the tournament.
Following thorough medical examinations and consultations with leading medical experts, Naseem has been advised to undergo surgery.
He is expected to recover in three to four months.
Following this Naseem Shah took to X, formerly known as Twitter, to express his disappointment.
“With a heavy heart, I'm sharing that I will not be part of this amazing team that will be representing our beloved country. While I'm disappointed, I believe everything is in Allah's hands. InshahAllah will be on the field very soon,” Naseem said.
“Thank you to all my fans for the prayers,” he added.
With a heavy heart, I'm sharing that I will not be part of this amazing team that will be representing our beloved country. While I'm disappointed, I believe everything is in Allah's hands. InshahAllah will be on the field very soon.— Naseem Shah (@iNaseemShah) September 22, 2023
Thank you to all my fans for the prayers!
The selectors have also named three traveling reserves in wicketkeeper-batter Mohammad Haris, mystery spinner Abrar Ahmed, and fast bowler Zaman Khan.
Cricket enthusiasts nationwide have been eagerly awaiting this revelation, as it marks a crucial step in Pakistan's journey to compete on the global stage in the ICC World Cup.
The announcement, initially planned for yesterday, was postponed due to unforeseen circumstances.
Sources within the PCB indicate that the national cricket team will depart for India on September 27.
The first warm-up match of the national squad will be contested against New Zealand on September 29.
Pakistan missed out on a semi-final spot in the 2019 iteration of the event because of a lower net run-rate to New Zealand, who ended up as runners-up.
The team’s best performance came in the 1992 edition when they lifted the trophy at the MCG after defeating England.
Pakistan featured in the final of the 1999 edition and reached the semi-finals in 1979, 1983, 1987, and 2011.