Naseem Shah named in Pakistan’s U19 World Cup squad


Rohail Nazir, the wicketkeeper-batsman, will lead a 15-man Pakistan squad for the Under-19 World Cup to be held in South Africa in January and February next year. Naseem Shah, who recently made his Test debut versus Australia, has also been included.

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Nazir, 18, has already played nine first-class games and was also the captain of Pakistan’s Under-19 side in the recently-concluded Under-19 Asia Cup held in Sri Lanka. During the course of the tournament, he also notched up his maiden Youth one-day ton against India Under-19. Opener Haider Ali, who plays for Northern in first-class cricket, has been named the vice-captain.

Meanwhile, Naseem, who played his maiden Test at the Gabba, has also been picked. The fast bowler, who has partaken in just eight first-class matches, shone brightly in a practice game against Australia A, snaring the wicket of Marcus Harris. However, he didn’t have a good time in the Gabba Test, ending up with just one wicket.

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Pakistan, the 2004 and 2006 Under-19 champions, are placed in Group C. The Asian nation will take on Scotland in their opening fixture on January 19. Pakistan’s second game will be versus Zimbabwe on January 22. Their third and final group fixture will be against Bangladesh on January 24.

The top two sides from the four groups will progress to the Super League. The Super League phase will begin on 28 January, with the top four sides progressing to the semi-finals. The final will be played on February 9 in Benoni.

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Pakistan Squad: Abdul Wahid Bangalzai, Haider Ali, Mohammad Shehzad, Mohammad Huraira, Mohammad Irfan Khan, Rohail Nazir (c) Abbas Afridi, Fahad Munir, Qasim Akram, Amir Ali, Arish Ali Khan, Amir Khan, Naseem Shah, Tahir Hussain, Mohammad Haris