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Cricket returns to Pakistan with Zimbabwe T20I

Shoaib, Sami recalled as Pakistan takes on revamped Zimbabwe

Cricket returns to Pakistan with Zimbabwe T20I - Cricket News
Zimbabwe will have to adjust to not having the experience and skill of Brendan Taylor.
Pakistan return to home comforts for the first time in six years to face off against a Test playing nation in Zimbabwe, starting with the first of two T20 internationals to be played in Lahore on Friday (22nd May). The mini series also includes three ODIs.
 
Zimbabwe arrived in Pakistan amidst security concerns that had dissuaded other teams from visiting in the recent past.
 
Pakistan has been forced to play all their recent home games in neutral venues such as Sharjah and Dubai.The team gave a good account of itself in the last home series against New Zealand in three Tests, two T20 Internationals and five ODIs. The Test series was tied at 1-1, T20 spoils were shared and New Zealand took the ODI series 3-2.
 
Players such as Ahmed Shehzad, Asad Shafiq, Umar Akmal and Azhar Ali performed well. All these players have earned 50 international caps and without playing a single game at home, making the upcoming series extra special.
 
Pakistan's World Cup campaign ended with defeat against eventual champions Australia in the quarterfinal. With the World Cup behind them Pakistan went on a tour of Bangladesh, losing all three ODIs under Azhar Ali, newly appointed captain in place of Misbah-ul-Haq, who retired from ODIs after the World Cup.Pakistan also lost the solitary T20 international but managed to win the Test series comprehensively by beating a buoyant Bangladesh by 328 runs in the second Test after the first Test ended in a draw.
 


Zimbabwe didn't leave a major mark on the World Cup, except some spirited performances and close finishes. Zimbabwe will have to adjust to not having the experience and skill of Brendan Taylor, who gave up international cricket after the World Cup in order to pursue a career in county cricket with Nottinghamshire.The squad travelling to Pakistan had no room for Regis Chakabva, Stuart Matsikenyeri, Tafadzwa Kamungozi and allrounder Solomon Mire, while seamer Tendai Chatara was forced out with a broken leg.
 
Shoaib Malik and Mohammad Sami were recalled to the Pakistan side for the two Twenty20 Internationals to be played in Lahore. Nauman Anwar, the uncapped 19-year-old opener, and Imad Wasim, a former under-19 captain, were also called up.
 
Zimbabwe went in for a major overhaul, recalling as many as six players in Charles Coventry, Graeme Cremer, Chris Mpofu, Vusi Sibanda, Brian Vitori and Richmond Mutumbami to the squad, while Roy Kaia, the 23-year-old uncapped allrounder, was also included and was expected to make his debut. Mutumbami will take up the big gloves in place of the retired Brendon Taylor.
 
Teams (from):
Pakistan: Shahid Afridi (Capt), Sarfraz Ahmed (WK), Ahmed Shehzad, Mohammad Hafeez, Mukhtar Ahmed, Nauman Anwar, Shoaib Malik, Umar Akmal, Mohammad Rizwan, Anwar Ali, Hammad Azam, Imad Wasim, Bilawal Bhatti, Wahab Riaz, Mohammad Sami.
 
Zimbabwe: Elton Chigumbura (capt), Sikandar Raza, Chamu Chibhabha, Charles Coventry, Graeme Cremer, Craig Ervine, Roy Kaia, Hamilton Masakadza, Christopher Mpofu, Tawanda Mupariwa, Richmond Mutumbami(WK), Tinashe Panyangara, Vusi Sibanda, Prosper Utseya, Brian Vitori, Sean Williams.

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