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Depleted Pakistan squad arrives in England amid Covid-19 fears

According to the tentative schedule, the first Test will be played on August 5 in Manchester

PHOTO COURTESY: PCB

A 20-player Pakistan squad has arrived in England, through a chartered flight from Lahore, on Sunday despite novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

Upon arrival in Manchester, the squad was transported to Worcestershire where the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) completed their testing before the 14-day isolation period, during which they will be allowed to train and practice. The side will move to Derbyshire on July 13.

According to the tentative schedule, the first Test will be played on August 5 in Manchester. Pakistan will play the remaining two games in Southampton, starting on August 13 and 21 respectively.

Pakistan will also play three Twenty20 Internationals (T20Is) in Southampton on August 29, 31 and September 2.

Squad

Azhar Ali, Babar Azam, Abid Ali, Asad Shafiq, Faheem Ashraf, Fawad Alam, Iftikhar Ahmad, Imad Wasim, Imamul Haq, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Abbas, Musa Khan, Naseem Shah, Rohail Nazir, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Shan Masood, Sohail Khan, Usman Shinwari, and Yasir Shah.

Zafar Gohar, the left-arm spinner who played an ODI in 2015, will join the side from England and will only be involved in pre-match preparations.

Player support personnel

Mansoor Rana (manager), Misbahul Haq (head coach), Younis Khan (batting coach), Mushtaq Ahmed (spin bowling coach), Shahid Aslam (assistant coach), Abdul Majeed (fielding coach), Talha Butt (team analyst), Yasir Malik (strength and conditioning coach), Dr Sohail Saleem (team doctor), Lt Col (retd) Usman Riffat (security manager) and Raza Kitchlew (media and digital content manager).

Cliffe Deacon and Waqar Younis will join the side directly from South Africa and Australia, respectively, while Shoaib Malik is expected to travel around July 24.

Pakistan had earlier named a 29-member squad for the tour but following advice from leading sports science experts and as per the UK government regulations, players who had tested positive, during the PCB testing process, were unable to travel on Sunday.

Six Pakistan players who tested negative for Covid-19, in the second phase, will go through another test on Monday, June 29.

They will be sent to England as soon as their two tests return negative.

It must be noted that, after retest, Mohammad Hafeez, Wahab Riaz, Mohammad Hasnain, Shadab Khan, Fakhar Zaman, Mohammad Rizwan all tested negative for Covid-19.

Meanwhile, Kashif Bhatti, Haris Rauf, Haider Ali and Imran Khan had once again tested positive for the virus.

Reaction

Here we come guys. Keep us in your prayers. #RiseAndRise pic.twitter.com/PE38CTaCbw

— Imam Ul Haq (@ImamUlHaq12) June 28, 2020

 

Going to Uk tour. 🤲🤲🤲🤲 pic.twitter.com/5aALhZ2vXI

— Abid Ali (@AbidAli_Real) June 28, 2020

 

On our way to another historic Pakistan tour to England. Its always great to play in England and I look forward to get on this journey with our talented bunch of players. Fans, as always we would be in need of you prayers, love and unconditional support. #PAKvENG #RiseAndRise pic.twitter.com/8KLFQjAYNU

— Babar Azam (@babarazam258) June 28, 2020

 

Pakistan team depart for tour of England. #ENGvPAK pic.twitter.com/okxx7sQvBB

— Pakistan Cricket (@TheRealPCB) June 28, 2020