Sohail Khan returns as Pakistan announce squad for World XI games

Sohail Khan
Sohail Khan has been out of the Pakistan squad since December last year. — AFP/File

Fast-bowler Sohail Khan on Friday returned to the Pakistan squad for the first time after December 2016 as the national selection committee announced 16 names who will face the World XI in three T20 matches in Lahore next month.

Khan, who played his last T20 international back in 2011, was dropped from the squad following Pakistan’s tour to Australia late last year.

Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Najam Sethi on Thursday announced that South African captain Faf du Plessis will lead the World XI that comprised illustrious names from at least seven Test playing nations.

The World XI will play three Twenty20 Internationals for the Independence Cup against Pakistan in the city of Lahore on 12, 13 and 15 September.

The matches are aimed at ending Pakistan’s international isolation, triggered after militants attacked the visiting Sri Lankan team’s bus in Lahore in 2009.

Other players for the World XI include David Miller (South Africa), Grant Elliott (New Zealand), Samuel Badree (West Indies), Ben Cutting (Australia), Morne Morkel (South Africa), Tim Paine (Australia), Thisara Perera (Sri Lanka), Imran Tahir (South Africa).

Former Zimbabwe captain and ex-England coach Andy Flower will coach the side, which is set to arrive in Lahore on September 11 after attending a two-day camp in Dubai, said the PCB.

Since the suspension of international cricket, Pakistan have been forced to play all their home series in the neutral venues of the United Arab Emirates.

But security has improved in recent years, giving fans hope that international cricket could finally return, a massive boost in a country where the game is far and away its most popular sport.

Pakistan squad

Sarfraz Ahmed (capt), Fakhar Zaman, Ahmed Shehzad, Babar Azam, Shoaib Malik, Umar Amin, Imad Wasim, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, Faheem Ashraf, Hasan Ali, Amir Yamin, Mohammad Amir, Ruman Raees, Usman Khan, Sohail Khan.