Thursday, October 7, 2010

Pakistan to delay naming captain

Shahid Afridi is in Pakistan's squad but has not been named as captain
Afridi has been Pakistan's regular one-day captain since the summer of 2009

Pakistan have announced a 15-man squad for their forthcoming limited-overs internationals against South Africa.

The two Twenty20 internationals and five one-day internationals will be played in Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

Regular one-day skipper Shahid Afridi is in the squad, but no captain has yet been nominated for the series.

Wicketkeeper Kamran Akmal has been dropped after an error-strewn tour of England, while former coach Intikhab Alam returns as team manager.

Yawar Saeed had resigned as Pakistan's tour manager following their controversial tour of England, which was marred by allegations of spot-fixing.

The three Pakistan players at the centre of the claims - Test captain Salman Butt, and seamers Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir - remain under provisional suspension by the International Cricket Council, although none of them have been charged by police.

The trio's appeals against their ICC suspensions will be heard on 30 and 31 October.

In any event, Asif cannot play in Dubai or Abu Dhabi as he is banned from entering the United Arab Emirates after being detained for possession of opium at Dubai airport in 2008.

Kamran's place behind the stumps goes to Zulqarnain Haider, who was his deputy in England before a broken finger ended his participation in the tour.

Middle-order batsman Misbah-ul-Haq and left-arm spinner Abdur Rehman, who did not tour England, are recalled.

But there is no place for ex-skipper Shoaib Malik, Azhar Ali, Shahzaib Hasan, Mohammad Irfan or Wahab Riaz, who all played in Tests or one-dayers against England.

Riaz was the fourth Pakistan player after Butt, Asif and Amir to be questioned by British police in relation to allegations of corruption, although he was not charged and is not under ICC suspension.

Afridi has been Pakistan's regular captain in limited-overs cricket since the summer of 2009, although veteran batsman Mohammad Yousuf skippered the side in Australia at the start of 2010.

The first Twenty20 international takes place on 26 October, and is an extra game added to the schedule - with the proceeds raising money for the victims of the recent floods in Pakistan.

The one-day series is followed by two Tests against South Africa, also in Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

Before travelling to the UAE, the Proteas begin a brief limited-overs series against Zimbabwe in South Africa - which starts on 8 October.

Pakistan squad: Imran Farhat, Mohammad Hafeez, Mohammad Yousuf, Misbah-ul-Haq, Umar Akmal, Asad Shafiq, Fawad Alam, Shahid Afridi, Abdul Razzaq, Umar Gul, Saeed Ajmal, Abdur Rehman, Shoaib Akhtar, Tanvir Ahmed, Zulqarnain Haider (wk).

South Africa Twenty20 squad: Johan Botha (capt), Loots Bosman, AB de Villiers (wk), JP Duminy, Colin Ingram, David Miller, Albie Morkel, Morne Morkel, Wayne Parnell, Robin Peterson, Graeme Smith, Rusty Theron, Lonwabo Tsotsobe.

South Africa ODI squad: Graeme Smith (capt), Hashim Amla, Johan Botha, AB de Villiers (wk), JP Duminy, Colin Ingram, Jacques Kallis, Charl Langeveldt, David Miller, Albie Morkel, Morne Morkel, Wayne Parnell, Robin Peterson, Dale Steyn, Lonwabo Tsotsobe.

South Africa Test squad: Graeme Smith (capt), Hashim Amla, Johan Botha, Mark Boucher (wk), AB de Villiers, JP Duminy, Paul Harris, Jacques Kallis, Morne Morkel, Wayne Parnell, Alviro Petersen, Ashwell Prince, Dale Steyn, Lonwabo Tsotsobe.

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