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Irfan ruled out of short tour of South Africa

November 16, 2013

ISLAMABAD (AP) — Pakistan fast bowler Mohammad Irfan on Saturday was ruled out of the short tour of South Africa after developing a hip strain during the Twenty20 international against the Proteas on Friday.

The Pakistan Cricket Board named uncapped fast bowler Bilawal Bhatti as a replacement in a 17-member squad for the two Twenty20s and three one-day internationals which begins with a Twenty20 at Johannesburg on Wednesday.

Misbah-ul-Haq has been retained as captain for the three ODIs after losing the series 4-1 against South Africa in the United Arab Emirates.

Mohammad Hafeez, who did not score a run in Pakistan’s 2-0 rout against the Proteas in Twenty20s, will continue to lead in the shorter format.

The PCB said that Irfan will stay in the UAE for medical checkups.

Irfan fell over in his follow through while bowling his second over on Friday, and walked off the field in pain.

He returned to bat at No. 11, but was visibly in discomfort while running between the wickets as Pakistan lost the second Twenty20 by six runs.

Surprisingly Pakistan selectors kept faith with the same set of batsmen who struggled against South Africa in the UAE.

Allrounders Abdul Razzaq and Shoaib Malik, who both made an unimpressive return to the team for the Twenty20s, got another opportunity to strike forms along with struggling Shahid Afridi, Umar Akmal and Nasir Jasmhed.

Cape Town will host the second Twenty20 on Nov. 22 and the first one-day international on Nov. 24. The remaining two ODIs will be played at Port Elizabeth (Nov. 27) and at Centurion (Nov. 30).

It will be the third bilateral one-day series between the two countries this year. Pakistan lost 3-2 against the Proteas in South Africa earlier this year before losing in the UAE. Pakistan is yet to beat South Africa in seven bilateral one-day series.

The just-completed series saw South Africa jump to No. 3 in the world Twenty20 rankings, and Pakistan fall to No. 4.


Squad: Misbah ul Haq (captain ODIs), Mohammad Hafeez (captain T20s), Ahmad Shehzad, Umar Akmal, Asad Shafiq, Umar Amin, Shahid Afridi, Abdul Razzaq, Shoaib Malik, Sohaib Maqsood, Sohail Tanvir, Anwar Ali, Junaid Khan, Saeed Ajmal, Abdul Rehman, Nasir Jamshed, Bilawal Bhatti.

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