Published: 24th Dec,2020 4:00AM

Shadab Khan
Shadab Khan of Pakistan. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

Owing to the unavailability of Shadab, the team management included left-arm spinner Zafar Gohar as the potential replacement.

Pakistan cricket team received a massive blow as the all-rounder Shadab Khan has been ruled out of the first game against New Zealand, starting from December 26 in Mount Maunganui.

Shadab is down with a thigh injury after participating in the final match of the T20I series, which Pakistan won by 4 wickets in Napier but lost the T20I series by 1-2.

The Men in Green will also be without the services of their skipper Babar Azam in the first Test against New Zealand. Babar had sustained a thumb fracture while training at Queenstown and was ruled out of the T20I series. In the same light,

the skipper will be unavailable for the first Test in Mount Maunganui and efficient domestic Test scorer Imran Butt has been named as his replacement.

As per the reports, Shadab will undergo his MRI scans in Tauranga on Thursday,

December 24, following which the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) will get clarity on the nature of his injury and the time he requires to regain his full fitness.

Zafar Gohar named as a replacement for Shadab Khan

Owing to the unavailability of Shadab, the team management included left-arm spinner Zafar Gohar as the potential replacement for the game slated to begin from December 26.

Zafar has joined the Test side from Hamilton where he was preparing with the Pakistan Shaheens for Sunday’s T20 match against the Northern Knights.

The 25-year-old Zafar has excellent records to his name in the domestic circuit. He had finished as the third-highest wicket-taker in the 2019-20 first-class Quaid-e-Azam Trophy with 38 wickets including five four-fers and one five-wicket haul under his belt. He had also participated in the National T20 Cup 2020-21 for Central Punjab scalping 8 wickets.

Overall, Zafar has played 39 First-class games, picking 144 wickets,

including six five-wicket hauls in an innings and two ten-wicket match hauls at a stunning economy of 2.85.

Pakistan squad for Tests: Mohammad Rizwan (captain for 1st Test),

Abid Ali,

Azhar Ali,

Faheem Ashraf,

Fawad Alam,

Haris Sohail,

Imran Butt,

Mohammad Abbas,

Naseem Shah,

Sarfaraz Ahmed,

Shaheen Afridi,

Shan Masood,

Sohail Khan,

Yasir Shah and Zafar Gohar. (Babar Azam, Imam-ul-Haq, and Shadab Khan not available for the first Test)