The 34-men Pakistan squad and coaches have departed for New Zealand to feature in the three-match T20I and two-match Test series. Soon after landing, they will go under 14-days quarantine, as per new norms.
Pakistan’s newly-appointed Test captain Babar Azam posted a group photo, on Twitter, with his teammates while waiting in the airport ahead of the departure. He captioned the post,” Next stop, New Zealand.”
Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) also uploaded photos of the players on their official social media handles.
— Babar Azam (@babarazam258) November 22, 2020
— Pakistan Cricket (@TheRealPCB) November 23, 2020
Fakhar Zaman excluded from Pakistan’s squad:
Initially, the batsman Fakhar Zaman was included in Pakistan’s squad for the New Zealand tour. But he has been ruled out because he could recover from fever on time. He featured in the last series against Zimbabwe at home while also played for Lahore Qalandar in the recently concluded Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2020.
“Fakhar’s Covid test report was received on Saturday which came out negative but today he picked up fever. As soon as his condition was reported, he was isolated from the rest of the squad in the team hotel. We are constantly monitoring his condition and remain hopeful of his quick recovery; however he is not fit to travel with the squad and as such has been withdrawn from the touring party,” Team doctor Sohail Saleem said.
Meanwhile, the New Zealand tour will begin with the three-match T20I series followed by two-match Test series. Before the start of the tour, New Zealand A and Pakistan A will play two four-day Tour Match.
Auckland and Hamilton will host the first and second T20I match while Napier will host the third T20I match. The first Test will be played from December 26 to December 30 at Bay Oval and Hagley Oval will hold the last Test match from January 3 to January 7.