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Two new faces in Pakistan Test squad to NZ

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 31/10/2016

Hard-hitting opening batsman Sharjeel Khan has won promotion into the Pakistan Test squad to tour New Zealand.

Sharjeel, who has played 35 limited overs internationals, is one of two uncapped Test players in a 16-strong squad named for matches in Christchurch and Hamilton in November.

The 27-year-old boasts a strike rate of 112.62 in ODIs, boosted by a blistering 152 off 86 balls against Ireland in August.

His domestic first class form has earned him a place in a strong squad to be captained by the experienced Misbah-ul-Haq.

The other uncapped player is middle-order batsman/wicketkeeper Mohammad Rizwan, who has played 30 limited overs internationals.

He toured England in July but didn't feature in the four-Test series and was left out of the current series against the West Indies in the United Arab Emirates.

The selectors have dropped Zulfiqar Babar, surmising New Zealand conditions won't suit his left-arm spin.

Three left-arm quicks are included - Wahab Riaz, Mohammad Amir and Rahat Ali.

Pakistan are second in the world Test rankings following a 2-2 series draw in England. They currently lead the three-match series against the West Indies 2-0.

New Zealand have slumped to seventh in the rankings, having been swept 3-0 in India.

The first Test is at Hagley Oval from November 17 and the second at Seddon Park from November 25.

Pakistan squad: Misbah-ul-Haq (capt), Azhar Ali, Sami Aslam, Sharjeel Khan, Younis Khan, Asad Shafiq, Babar Azam, Sarfraz Ahmed, Mohammad Rizwan, Yasir Shah, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Amir, Wahab Riaz, Rahat Ali, Sohail Khan, Imran Khan.

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