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Asif Ali replaces Saud Shakeel in Pakistan's ODI squad for South Africa tour

Asif Ali has not played a single ODI match since the 2019 World Cup
Asif Ali has not played a single ODI match since the 2019 World Cup
ANALYST
Modified 26 Mar 2021
News

Middle-order batsman Asif Ali has returned to the Pakistan ODI squad for the South African tour. Ali has joined the team as Saud Shakeel's injury replacement.

According to a Pakistan Cricket Board media release, Saud Shakeel suffered a quadriceps tear on his left leg during a practice game in Lahore. With the Pakistan cricket team scheduled to depart on Friday (March 26), the PCB had no other option but to name a replacement for Shakeel.

PCB had already named Asif Ali in the T20I squad for the Pakistan tour. Since Ali is a middle-order batter like Shakeel, he earned a place in the ODI squad as the replacement player.

The Pakistan cricket team is scheduled to play three ODIs and four T20Is against South Africa from April 2-16. Johannesburg and Centurion will host all seven white-ball fixtures between the two teams.

Asif Ali's highest score in ODI cricket is 52

Asif Ali played his last ODI against Australia during the 2019 World Cup
Asif Ali played his last ODI against Australia during the 2019 World Cup

Asif Ali has played 18 ODIs for the Pakistan cricket team. He made his ODI debut against the Zimbabwean side at the Queen's Sports Club in July 2018.

In the 14 ODI knocks he has played for his country, the Faisalabad-born player has aggregated 361 runs at an average of 27.77. Although he got off to a good start on multiple occasions, Asif could not convert it into a big score. The 29-year-old has three ODI fifties to his name, but his best score is only 52.

Asif Ali will look to improve on that record now that he has got an opportunity to prove himself. It will be interesting to see how he performs in his first ODI series against South Africa.

Published 26 Mar 2021, 15:08 IST
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