• Selector Muhammad Wasim cleared that Mohammad Hafeez can’t join the bio-bubble until the cut-off date.

  • Fakhar Zaman and Wahab Riaz have been dropped due to their poor performances.

On Sunday, Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) announced the 20-member squad for the upcoming T20I series against South Africa. The hosts are currently 1-0 up in the ongoing two-match Test series and will next have a face-off in the three-T20I leg starting from February 11.

Veteran batsman Mohammad Hafeez, who is not among the PCB’s centrally contracted players, is the notable absentee from the squad. Hafeez is currently playing in the T10 League in Abu Dhabi and had asked the management to allow him to join the team in Lahore after the February 3 deadline.

Unfortunately, the scenario is as such that every player has been asked to join the bio bubble until February 3 and if one fails to do so, then he will be considered “unavailable” for South Africa T20Is, PCB chief selector Mohammad Wasim said in a statement.

The selectors, meanwhile, have dropped opening batsman Fakhar Zaman and fast bowler Wahab Riaz due to their poor performances in recently-concluded matches while all-rounder Shadab Khan is still recovering from his leg injury.

Zaman could score only 192 runs in his last 17 T20 internationals at an average of 11.29 while left-arm pacer Riaz took six wickets in his last 8 games.

Mohammad Rizwan will continue to be a preferred wicket-keeper in the squad while former skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed has also retained his place along with Shaheen Afridi, Haider Ali, Hussain Talat among others.

All the three matches of the T20I series will be played at Lahore’s Gaddafi Stadium on February 11, 13 and 14, respectively.

Pakistan squad for South Africa T20Is:

Babar Azam, Haider Ali, Khushdil Shah, Hussain Talat, Danish Aziz, Asif Ali, Iftikhar Ahmed, Mohammad Nawaz, Zafar Gohar, Faheem Ashraf, Aamer Yamin, Amad Butt, Mohammad Rizwan, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Shaheen Afridi, Haris Rauf, Mohammad Hasnain, Hasan Ali, Usman Qadir, Zahid Mehmood.

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