Pakistan have suffered a huge injury blow ahead of the upcoming Asia Cup 2022 as their pace spearhead Shaheen Afridi has been ruled out of the competition due to a ligament injury in his knee. Afridi has been on the sidelines due to the injury since July. He had sustained the injury while fielding in the first Test against Sri Lanka in Galle.
The left-arm pacer had bowled 14.1 overs in the first innings of that Test and had taken 4 wickets to help Pakistan bowl out Sri Lanka for 222. But in the second innings, he could bowl just seven overs and had left the field after appearing to be in discomfort on day 3 of the Test. He was initially seen hobbling in the field after a diving fielding effort. Later, he was spotted with an ice pack wrapped around his knee.
Shaheen Afridi has not played a match since then. He was expected to regain his fitness before the Asia Cup and was also named in the squad for the tournament. However, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has confirmed that the pacer would miss the continental championship due to the knee injury.
PCB gives update on Shaheen Afridi:
PCB, on Saturday, announced that Shaheen Afridi has been advised more rest by the team doctors and confirmed that the pacer would not play in Asia Cup as well as the home series against England. PCB also stated that the pacer is expected to return to action before the T20 World Cup in October.
“Shaheen Shah Afridi has been advised 4-6 weeks rest by the PCB Medical Advisory Committee and independent specialists following latest scans and reports. This means Shaheen has been ruled out of the ACC T20 Asia Cup and home series against England, but is expected to return to competitive cricket in October with the New Zealand T20I tri-series, which will be followed by the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup Australia 2022.
“Shaheen had suffered a right knee ligament injury while fielding during the first Test against Sri Lanka in Galle,” stated PCB.
Asia Cup 2022 is scheduled to begin on August 27. Pakistan, on the other hand, will open their campaign on August 28 when they lock horns against arch-rivals India.
Pakistan squad for Asia Cup 2022:
Babar Azam (c), Shadab Khan, Asif Ali, Fakhar Zaman, Haider Ali, Haris Rauf, Iftikhar Ahmed, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan, Mohammad Wasim Jnr, Naseem Shah, Shahnawaz Dahani, Usman Qadir.