Leg-spinner Shadab Khan and batsman Imam-ul-Haq have been ruled out of the remainder of the New Zealand tour because of injuries. Imam-ul-Haq suffered a fracture on his left thumb, and he will fly back to Pakistan on Sunday.
Meanwhile, Shadab Khan will miss out because of a thigh strain. Earlier, the all-rounder was ruled out of just the first Test. However, now it is believed that Khan would be unable to recover in time even for the second encounter. He is also expected to miss the upcoming home series against South Africa.
Shadab Khan recently led the Pakistan side in the three-match T20 series against the Kiwis, which the visitors lost 2-1. Pakistan are already missing their regular captain and premier batsman, Babar Azam, because of a thumb fracture. The latest injury issues are undoubtedly a setback for them.
Khan, meanwhile, will not return to Pakistan and will continue with his rehabilitation in New Zealand, as confirmed by Pakistan's team doctor Sohail Saleem. On Khan's latest injury, the doctor said:
''The MRI reports have confirmed it is a fresh injury and not the one that had sidelined him from the Zimbabwe series last month. The latest injury will be treated conservatively, and Shadab will undergo a six-week rehabilitation programme during which he will have weekly ultrasound scans."
"After the completion of the six weeks, the medical panel will assess and evaluate the injury before making a call on Shadab’s return to competitive cricket," added the doctor.
Shadab Khan's performance in the T20 series
The 22-year-old didn't have the best of time in the recent T20 series against New Zealand. He also had the added responsibility of captaining his side in the absence of Babar Azam.
The all-rounder failed to pick up any wicket and managed just 46 runs with the bat. His most notable contribution came in the first T20I, where he played a handy knock of 42 to help Pakistan set up a total of 153. However, the Black Caps managed to chase it down in their designated 20 overs.Published 26 Dec 2020, 19:06 IST