Ajmal among Pakistan’s 30 World Cup probables
ISLAMABAD (AP) — Pakistan named suspended offspinner Saeed Ajmal in its preliminary squad of 30 players for next year’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.
Ajmal was suspended in September for an illegal bowling action and has been undergoing rehabilitation under former test offspinner Saqlain Mushtaq at the National Cricket Academy.
The Pakistan Cricket Board Ajmal showed significant improvement on his bowling action during testing at the Lougborough University in England, but his elbow extension is still above the allowed 15 degrees limit.
Fit-again fast bowler Umar Gul and Wahab Riaz were also included in the list of probables which will be trimmed down to a final 15 by Jan. 7.
“The most positive aspect is that some of our foremost proven talents have overcome physical issues and are raring to be given an opportunity,” chief selector Moina Khan said in a statement.
Pakistan will be playing a five-match one-day international series against New Zealand starting in Dubai on Monday, and will also take on the Black Caps in another short one-day series before February’s World Cup.
The preliminary squad includes five opening batsmen, nine middle-order batsmen, six fast bowlers, four spinners, four allrounders and two wicketkeepers.
The PCB has already named Misbah-ul-Haq as captain of the team for the World Cup.
Preliminary squad: Misbah-ul-Haq (captain), Mohammad Hafeez, Ahmed Shehzad, Nasir Jamshed, Sharjeel Khan, Sami Aslam, Younis Khan, Asad Shafiq, Azhar Ali, Sohaib Maqsood, Fawad Alam, Haris Sohail, Shoaib Malik, Umar Akmal, Mohammad Irfan, Wahab Riaz, Junaid Khan, Umar Gul, Ehsan Adil, Mohammad Talha, Saeed Ajmal, Zulfiqar Babar, Raza Hasan, Yasir Shah, Shahid Afridi, Anwar Ali, Bilawal Bhatti, Sohail Tanvir, Sarfraz Ahmad, Kamran Akmal.