LAHORE: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Saturday announced names of the probables for two national-level training camps while exempting from these camps all the Pakistan team players who participated in the ongoing T20 World Cup.

A camp for Pakistan Shaheens for their tour of Darwin, Australia and the other, named pre-season fielding and fitness camp, are starting in Karachi from Monday.

According to a PCB official, the probables for both the camps were selected by the members of the national selection committee comprising Wahab Riaz, Mohammad Yousuf, Abdul Razzaq, Asad Shafiq, Jason Gillespie and Test team captain Shan Masood.

Currently, Shan is playing in English County cricket and therefore is not included in the list of the players called for the pre-season camp, added the official.

The Shaheens will tour Darwin from July 14 to Aug 18 to play matches against Northern Territory (NT) and Bangladesh ‘A’ besides competing in a nine-team Top End T20 Series there.

Meanwhile, Gillespie, the newly-appointed head coach of Pakistan’s Test team, will attend the camp from July 8-13. He will then accompany the Shaheens squad as their head coach on the Darwin tour.

In a pathetic performance, the Babar Azam-led Pakistan crashed out of the T20 World Cup after suffering defeats at the hands of the USA and India in the group stage.

“The players, [who] participated in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup have been exempted from the Karachi camp,” read the PCB press release issued on Saturday.

“The PCB has announced details of the pre-season fitness and fielding camp, and Pakistan Shaheens’ training camp, which will be held at Karachi’s Hanif Mohammad High Performance Centre,” the release added.

According to the press release, the pre-season camp featuring 25 cricketers will take place from June 24 to July 7. The squad will be trimmed to a 15-member Pakistan Shaheens squad that will undergo a training camp from July 8-13 to prepare for their tour to Darwin.

In Darwin, the Shaheens will play two four-day matches against Bangladesh ‘A’, two 50-over matches against Northern Territory and Bangladesh ‘A’ besides participating in a nine-team Top End T20 Series.

According to the PCB, Gillespie will return to Pakistan from Darwin after Shaheens’ second four-day match against Bangladesh ‘A’, which ended on 29 July, to assume responsibilities as the national team’s head coach and start preparations for the two-Test series against Bangladesh.

“The pre-season fitness and fielding camp will be supervised by Mohammad Masroor, who will also travel to Darwin as assistant coach-cum-manager. Abdul Rehman will be the white-ball head coach and will join the Pakistan Shaheens side on July 28 for the two 50-over and Top End T20 Series matches from Aug 4-18.

“[The] national team players presently involved in competitive cricket in the United Kingdom and those who recently participated in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup have been exempted from the pre-season fitness and fielding camp,” the press release said.

Twenty-four probables have been named for the pre-season camp while one more will be added later.

Sources said the 25th player will most probably be Ahmed Shehzad, who is currently a strong critic of Pakistan T20 captain Babar Azam. Former captain Sarfaraz Ahmed and fast bowler Mohammad Wasim Junior, who recovered from injury recently, are included in the list of probables.

Players for the pre-season camp: Abdullah Shafique, Faisal Akram, Haseebullah, Hunain Shah, Imam-ul-Haq, Kamran Ghulam, Kashif Ali, Khurram Shahzad, Mehran Mumtaz, Mohammad Haris, Mohammad Huraira, Mohammad Wasim Jnr, Mubasir Khan, Muhammad Irfan Khan, Omair Bin Yousuf, Sahibzada Farhan, Sameen Gul, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Saud Shakeel, Shahnawaz Dahani, Tayyab Tahir, Umar Amin, Usman Qadir and Zahid Mahmood.

Players for the Shaheens camp: Haseebullah, Hunain Shah, Kamran Ghulam, Kashif Ali, Khurram Shahzad, Mehran Mumtaz, Mohammad Huraira, Mubasir Khan, Muhammad Irfan Khan, Omair Bin Yousuf, Sahibzada Farhan, Shahnawaz Dahani, Tayyab Tahir, Umar Amin.

Published in Dawn, June 23rd, 2024

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