Reigning Champions Trophy holders Pakistan have revealed their final 15 member squad for the World Cup. The Men in Green have also unveiled their new WC shirt, made by England based company AJ Fordham.
What are the differences between Pakistan’s first squad and the final CWC squad?
Three new players are in the final squad- Mohammad Amir, Wahab Riaz and Asif Ali, with Junaid Khan, Faheem Ashraf and Abid Ali making way.
Why has Wahab Riaz been recalled to the Pakistan squad for the 2019 World Cup?
Wahab’s last ODI for Pakistan came in June 2017 against India. He went for 87 runs in his 8.4 overs and it appeared that his international career was over when national coach Micky Arthur publicly criticised him.
However the struggles of Pakistan’s bowlers in English conditions- they conceded over 300 in every game, has made the selectors feel the need for an out and out pacer, and Wahab, who can easily hit 145+, fits that bill. It’s a controversial selection no doubt, and Junaid Khan and even Usman Shinwari could count themselves unlucky. Junaid even took to Twitter to voice his displeasure, releasing a photo of his mouth taped and saying “Sach Karwa hai” (Truth is bitter).
Amir’s selection, despite his recent struggles, is perhaps more understandable. His CT final spell has almost earned him legendary status in Pakistan and the selectors will be hoping that he can come back into form, with the World Cup also being held in the same country as the Champions Trophy.
Amir didn’t play the England ODI’s because of chickenpox, but it appears staying away from the carnage has elevated him up Pakistan’s bowling hierarchy.
Shadab Khan was a major doubt after contracting hepatitis, but has apparently recovered in time for the World Cup.
Pakistan don’t have a reserve wicket keeper
The squad announced has only one specialist keeper- skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed. While Inzamam Ul Haq has stated that Mohammad Rizwan and Abid Ali will both be in England on standby, the latter’s omission from the squad means that Pakistan will be hoping that their keeper doesn’t break down.
Pakistan’s new Cricket World Cup kit- photos