Kamran Akmal and Ahmed Shehzad have been recalled to the Twenty20 and One-day International squads for the Pakistan Tour of the West Indies.
The 35-year-old Kamran has not played for the Pakistanis for three years. He last appeared for the side in the 2014 ICC World T20I, but he has gradually worked his way back into the line-up, due to heavy scoring in domestic competitions.
Shehzad, aged 25, lost his place in the Pakistan side following the 2016 World Twenty20, due to disciplinary reasons, but he too, has fought his way back into the hearts of the national selection panel following decent scores in domestic competitions.
Azhar was captain of the ODI squad up to January, but poor form has sidelined him, although chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq, the Pakistani batting legend, has indicated he is not forgotten.
Five uncapped players have been named in the squads. They include batsman Fakhar Zaman and leg-spinner Shadab Khan, stars from the recent Pakistan T20 Super League. They have earned a place in the squads for both limited-overs formats.
Domestic veteran Asif Zakir, left-arm spinner Mohammad Asghar and medium-pacer Fahim Ashraf complete the list of newcomers.
“These young players are equally good and they are going to play international cricket for the country,” said Inzamam.
“So they need to play at the highest level at some stage and I have full faith in them. They will perform, and conditions in the West Indies, we all know are similar to the ones in subcontinent and the West Indies team isn’t like the one in the 1970s, 1980s or even from the 1990s. But still if they face tough competition there, this will obviously help them to develop.”
The Pakistanis play four Twenty20 Internationals and three One-day Internationals on the trip which also includes three Tests.
TWENTY20 INTERNATIONALS – Sarfraz Ahmed (captain), Ahmed Shehzad, Kamran Akmal, Mohammad Hafeez, Babar Azam, Shoaib Malik, Fakhar Zaman, Imad Wasim, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, Wahab Riaz, Sohail Tanvir, Rumman Raees, Hasan Ali, Usman Khan
ONE-DAY INTERNATIONALS – Sarfraz Ahmed (captain), Ahmed Shehzad, Kamran Akmal, Mohammad Hafeez, Babar Azam, Shoaib Malik, Fakhar Zaman, Asif Zakir, Imad Wasim, Shadab Khan, Hasan Ali, Wahab Riaz, Mohammad Amir, Fahim Ashraf, Junaid Khan, Mohammad Asghar