Pakistan have announced a 12-member squad for the first T20I against Bangladesh scheduled to take place at the Shere Bangla National Stadium on Friday (November 19).
Imad Wasim and Asif Ali, who were integral parts of the T20 World Cup squad, have been rested. Veteran all-rounder Mohammad Hafeez, who was also a part of the multi-nation tournament, had withdrawn himself earlier for the Bangladesh T20Is.
Mohammad Rizwan will continue to don the wicket-keeper's gloves. The opener was admitted to the ICU leading up to the semi-final clash of the T20 World Cup but played the match and scored a crucial fifty against Australia,
Shaheen Afridi, Hasan Ali and Haris Rauf will form the pace attack while Shadab Khan will be Pakistan's lone spinner.
Pakistan 12-member squad: Babar Azam (Captain), Shadab Khan (Vice Captain), Fakhar Zaman, Haider Ali, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan (wicketkeeper), Mohammad Wasim Jr., Shaheen Shah Afridi, Shoaib Malik.
Pakistan looked invincible in the group fixtures, registering wins against the likes of India and New Zealand to make it to the semifinals. However, they faced a shocking defeat to eventual winners Australia to bow out of the tournament.
Babar Azam & Co played a good brand of cricket throughout the competition and will hope to carry the same momentum against Bangladesh.
The second and third T20Is between Bangladesh and Pakistan will be played at the same venue on November 20 and 22.
Bangladesh wicket-keeper Mushfiqur Rahim rested for Pakistan T20Is
The Bangla Tigers have rested their former captain Mushfiqur Rahim for the three-match series against Pakistan. The wicket-keeper batsman came under the scanner for his below-par outings, having managed only one half-century in his last eight matches.
Bangladesh also had a horrendous T20 World Cup campaign where they lost to Scotland in the qualifiers and failed to win a single game in the Super-12 phase. The hosts will hope to put up a better display against Pakistan and find the right combinations ahead of the next T20 World Cup, which is less than a year away.