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The Pakistani women’s team have received a massive boost ahead of their white ball series against the dominant Australian side next month as star pacer Diana Baig returns to the squad. The mercurial pacer missed Pakistan’s latest assignment against Ireland due to a shoulder injury. She has been also included in the 15-player squad for the upcoming T20 World Cup in South Africa.
The Asian outfit will be buoyed by the return of their influential pacer as they look forward to facing a swashbuckling Australian side in an ODI and T20I series next month. Chief selector Asmavia Iqbal feels that the return of the senior players to the squad will boost their preparation for the impending ICC event in February next year.
“The return of Diana Baig, Sadia Iqbal, and Tuba Hassan will give a boost to the side and will strengthen our bowling attack which has the capability to do well. Sidra Nawaz has been added as our second wicket-keeper in the squad to give Muneeba Ali some space to express herself more with the bat, and gives an added option to the captain to utilize the services of a second wicket-keeper on the long tour,” Asmavia Iqbal said in an official statement.
The ODI series against Australia is very crucial: Asmavia Iqbal
Pakistan’s tour of Australia will kick off with the ODI series commencing on the 16th of January in Brisbane. Following the Australia tour, the subcontinent side will travel to South Africa for the T20 World Cup. They will take on arch-rivals India in their campaign opener in Cape Town on February 12.
“I wish luck to the players who have been selected for both the Australia series and ICC Women’s T20 World Cup. I am hopeful the side will continue to perform in the same manner they have performed recently in the ACC Women’s Asia Cup and Ireland series. The ODI series against Australia is very crucial, the expectations are high as we have won five of the six ICC Championship matches, and our aim is to qualify directly for the 50-over World Cup,” she added.
Pakistan ODI squad for Australia: Bismah Maroof (c), Aliya Riaz, Ayesha Naseem, Diana Baig, Fatima Sana, Ghulam Fatima, Kainat Imtiaz, Muneeba Ali (wk), Nashra Sandhu, Nida Dar, Omaima Sohail, Sadaf Shamas, Sadia Iqbal, Sidra Amin and Sidra Nawaz (wk)
Reserves: Aimen Anwar, Javeria Khan, and Tuba Hassan
Pakistan T20I squad for Australia and ICC Women’s T20 World Cup: Bismah Maroof (c), Aimen Anwar, Aliya Riaz, Ayesha Naseem, Diana Baig, Fatima Sana, Javeria Khan, Muneeba Ali (wk), Nashra Sandhu, Nida Dar, Omaima Sohail, Sadia Iqbal, Sidra Amin, Sidra Nawaz (wk) and Tuba Hassan
Reserves: Ghulam Fatima, Kainat Imtiaz, and Sadaf Shamas
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