The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) announced on Wednesday that pace sensation Shaheen Shah Afridi has been selected the vice-captain of the national side for the three-match Test series as Pakistan prepares for Australia in the Benaud-Qadir Trophy.
Shaheen Afridi selected as Australia’s Test series vice-captain
Following the release of the playing XI, Shaheen—who also serves as Pakistan’s captain for Twenty20 cricket—was named vice-captain for Test cricket in this particular series, which is set to start tomorrow, December 14. For the national team, Shaheen has participated in 27 Tests, 53 ODIs, and 52 T20Is. After being stripped of captaincy in all three forms of cricket, Shan Masood would captain the national team for the first time in an international match.
The batting line-up would be strengthened by Imam-ul-Haq, Abdullah Shafique, Babar Azam, Saud Shakeel, and Sarfaraz Ahmed (wk). In addition, all-rounders Salman Ali Agha and Faheem Ashraf are anticipated to perform well in the challenging Australian conditions. In the meantime, the bowling lineup will heavily rely on recently appointed vice captain Shaheen, as well as recently inducted players Aamir Jamal and Khurram Shahzad, who will play in his first Test match for Pakistan.
It is important to note that Pakistan has not triumphed in a Test match played in Australia since 1995. In their 26 games versus Australia, Pakistan has only triumphed four times, and in their previous five series, they have been thoroughly defeated. After shocking India in the ODI World Cup final last month, the Australians are playing at a high level.