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Pakistan Test players leave for Bangladesh for two-match series

Members of the Pakistan Test squad have left for Bangladesh ahead of a two-match Test series with the hosts.

Taking to its official Twitter handle, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) posted some photos of the Test cricketers before they left for the host country.

After landing in Dhaka, the cricketers will spend a day in isolation as part of COVID-19 SOPs. Later, they will join their teammates in the practice session.

A series of two Test matches will be played between Pakistan and Bangladesh, with the first Test starting on November 26 in Chittagong and the second starting on December 4.

Earlier, on November 15, the PCB announced the Test squad for the series against Bangladesh. The line up includes opener Imam-ul-Haq, middle-order batter Kamran Ghulam and off-spinner Bilal Asif. These players will replace Haris Rauf, Imran Butt, Shahnawaz Dahani and Yasir Shah, who were part of the 21-player side that toured West Indies in July/August.

Left-handed Imam has got the opportunity following his impressive performances in the ongoing Quaid-e-Azam Trophy in which he hit 488 runs in five innings of four matches, including an unbeaten double-century. Imam had last played a Test, his 11th, against Australia in Adelaide in November/December 2019.

Bilal will replace Yasir Shah, who is still recovering from a thumb injury he sustained during the National T20 and is yet to feature in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy. The off-spinner has taken 16 wickets in five Tests and has been drafted in the side considering the Bangladesh squad includes left-handed batters and is also looking ahead to the home Tests against Australia.

Kamran received a chance in the squad after he missed the West Indies tour. He was in the squad for the home series against South Africa after scoring a Quaid-e-Azam Trophy record of 1,249 runs in the 2020-21 season. Kamran is presently in Sri Lanka with the Pakistan Shaheens, where he scored 58 not out and 45 in two innings of the rain-affected two-match four-day series.

Earlier, the Men in Green won two of the three-match T20 International series. The two teams will play the third and final match of the series at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Dhaka on Monday.

The Test squad:

Babar Azam (captain), Mohammad Rizwan (vice-captain), Abdullah Shafique, Abid Ali, Azhar Ali, Bilal Asif, Faheem Ashraf, Fawad Alam, Hasan Ali, Imam-ul-Haq, Kamran Ghulam, Mohammad Abbas, Mohammad Nawaz, Naseem Shah, Nauman Ali, Sajid Khan, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Saud Shakeel, Shaheen Shah Afridi, and Zahid Mahmood.

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