With the exception of Naseem Shah’s injury, Pakistan’s roster for the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 was generally composed as anticipated.

The Men in Green have suffered a great loss since Naseem is not available. The bowler sustained an injury during his team’s Asia Cup Super Four match against India, and he is expected to miss a significant amount of action in the following months. Hasan Ali has taken his place.

Captain Babar Azam, Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Mohammed Rizwan, Iftikhar Ahmed, Mohammed Haris, Salman Agha, and Saud Shakeel are the batters on the team.

The all-around spinners are Mohammed Nawaz and Shadab Khan. Another spinoff is Usama Mir. Shaheen Shah Afridi, Haris Rauf, Hasan, and Mohammed Waseem make up the pace attack.

We examine the main lessons learned from the team that was unveiled on September 22, 2023.

Pakistan squad for the upcoming World Cup: 

Babar Azam (c), Shadab Khan, Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Abdullah Shafique, Mohammad Rizwan, Saud Shakeel, Iftikhar Ahmed, Salman Ali Agha, Mohammad Nawaz, Usama Mir, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Shaheen Afridi, Mohammad Wasim

Pakistan recently competed in the Asia Cup but was unable to advance to the championship match.

Prior to the Cricket World Cup, Pakistan will play two exhibition matches against New Zealand and Australia, respectively. On October 6 in Hyderabad, they face the Netherlands to start the competition.

All the World Cup 2023 squads

Emphasis on continuity 

Pakistani selectors have refrained from making any significant changes despite the inconsistent performances of a few players at the just finished Asia Cup. Pakistan’s two go-to spinners continue to be Shadab (six wickets at 40.83 in the Asia Cup) and Nawaz (one wicket at 94 in the Asia Cup).

When announcing the World Cup roster to the media, Pakistan’s chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq defended the pair, saying, “Shadab and Nawaz have played ODIs with us over the last two years. They did not perform well [at the Asia Cup], it is true. However, we have complete faith in them. They’ve been playing with us for a while and have been good.

Abrar Ahmed, a mysterious spinner who might have challenged the pair for first place, is on standby.  Similarly, despite having an Asia Cup batting average of 16.25, opener Fakhar Zaman keeps his spot.

Inzamam had high expectations for the team’s World Cup performance.

“We anticipate greater performances from them. If not for two poor performances, our side would have been rated first (in the ICC Men’s ODI side Rankings).

Fast bowling selections made in the face of injury

Along with Naseem, Mohammed Hasnain and Ihsanullah are two additional Pakistani pacers who are injured. The management in Pakistan now has fewer options than before because of this.

Inzamam spoke about this topic during the press conference.

Fast bowlers have a lot of injury problems, he claimed. “Like Hasnain before him, he had an injury and underwent surgery. Ihsanullah recently underwent elbow surgery. We have no more alternatives for quick bowling.

Hasan Ali was chosen despite the fact that he last played for the Pakistan ODI team in June 2022 due to these restrictions.

Backing existing resources to deal with middle-over problems

Pakistan had trouble keeping the ball in the middle overs of both of their Asia Cup matches against India. Ishan Kishan and Hardik Pandya amassed 138 runs for the fifth wicket in the middle overs of the group round. Virat Kohli and KL Rahul amassed 233 unbroken runs for the third wicket in the Super Four match.

Inzamam acknowledged that the team needed their bowling to be effective in these circumstances.

“There is no question that we are experiencing difficulties in the middle overs. We must use the bowlers who can help us win wickets.

However, Pakistan has generally supported the bowling squad that competed in the Asia Cup and has been playing for them lately. While there are some odd choices among the fallbacks, like as Abrar Ahmed and Zaman Khan, Pakistan has backed their regulars to address the middle-overs dilemma.

Spin-bowling all-rounders preferred

While Shadab and Nawaz serve as the setup’s primary all-rounders, Pakistan also has part-time options who can switch out the arm if necessary. Salman has only taken four ODI wickets to Iftikhar’s twelve.

This implies that an all-rounder with a fast bowl, like Faheem Ashraf, has no place. Pakistan’s campaign will instead have four competent speed bowlers in his place. 

Prior to the Cricket World Cup, Pakistan will play two exhibition matches against New Zealand and Australia, respectively. On October 6 in Hyderabad, they face the Netherlands to start their tournament campaign.

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