Pak vs BD: National squad to fly to Bangladesh tonight directly from Dubai

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The Pakistan cricket team will leave Dubai for Bangladesh tonight for the upcoming T20 and Test series starting in Dhaka from November 19.

Captain Babar Azam and all-rounder Shoaib Malik will join the squad in Bangladesh on November 16, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) said in a statement after the T20 World Cup Semi-final on Thursday.

The PCB has announced the team for the Bangladesh series retaining the squad that played the ICC T20 World Cup, except for Mohammad Hafeez who requested the team management to be left out, allowing opportunities for young players to participate.

Hafeez is the second-longest serving cricketer in the current Pakistan squad after Shoaib Malik. He had planned to announce retirement in November last year on the heels of the T20 World Cup in Australia, but deferred his decision as the tournament was postponed.

The batter opted out to allow younger batters to perform and gain international experience and exposure after discussions with Chief Selector Muhammad Wasim.

As such, Iftikhar Ahmed, who is in good form, has been added to the middle-order that also includes Haider Ali and Khushdil Shah.

Pakistan squad for the two Tests, which will be played from 26-30 November and 4-8 December in Chittagong and Dhaka, respectively will be announced in due course.

Meanwhile, the PCB has retained the same team management, which is presently in the United Arab Emirates, barring batting consultant Matthew Hayden who is not available due to prior commitments.

T20I squad

Babar Azam (captain), Shadab Khan (vice-captain), Asif Ali, Fakhar Zaman, Haider Ali, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imad Wasim, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan (wicketkeeper), Mohammad Wasim Jnr, Sarfaraz Ahmed (wicketkeeper), Shaheen Shah Afridi, Shahnawaz Dahani, Shoaib Malik, Usman Qadir

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