Inzamam's nephew in line for Test debut

Four uncapped players have been named in Pakistan's 16-man Test squad as they aim to rebuild after the retirements of Misbah-ul-Haq and Younis Khan.

Pakistan have named four uncapped players, including the nephew of former captain and current chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq, in their Test squad for the team's upcoming tour of Ireland and England.

Left-hander opener Imam-ul-Haq, who has played four-one-day internationals, scored a century on his debut against Sri Lanka last October.

The other new faces in the 16-member squad include batsmen Fakhar Zaman, Saad Ali and Usman Salahuddin. Leg-spinner Shadab Khan will fill in for slow-bowling spearhead Yasir Shah who is out with a hip injury.

"Yasir's absence is a big loss for us," chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq said Sunday.

"If we look at his numbers (of wickets) for the last two years, he has more wickets than any other bowler for Pakistan."

Yasir has taken 164 wickets in 28 Test matches since making his debut in 2014 and has been instrumental in Pakistan's success - especially in the United Arab Emirates.

In the absence of Yasir, Pakistan's spin workload with fall on Shadab Khan, who has performed well in limited-overs cricket but has played only one Test match.

All-rounder Haris Sohail is the other spin option for Pakistan, who could bowl left-arm spin.

Faheem Ashraf is another all-rounder included, who could prove handy in batting down the order.

Batsman Saad is selected primarily on his form in the last Quaid-e-Azam trophy tournament, which is Pakistan's premier four-day first-class tournament.

Saad scored 935 runs at an impressive average of 68.35 in a season that was dominated by bowlers.

Inzamam said that the selectors have tried to strengthen Pakistan's batting line-up and also wanted to give players a chance to experience English conditions ahead of next year's World Cup.

"It's an ideal opportunity for our batsmen to get used to English conditions because we have to play next year's World Cup in England," he said.

Ireland will be making their Test debut against Pakistan at Dublin on May 11. The two Test matches against England will be played on May 24-28 and June 1-5 at Lord's in London and Headingley in Leeds, respectively.

Squad:

Sarfraz Ahmed (captain), Azhar Ali, Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Sami Aslam, Asad Shafiq, Babar Azam, Haris Sohail, Saad Ali, Usman Salahuddin, Faheem Ashraf, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Abbas, Hasan Ali, Rahat Ali.

Source: AAP

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