Pakistan include in-form Yasir Shah in Twenty20 squad
Fast-rising spinner Yasir Shah is set to make his Twenty20 comeback in Pakistan`s upcoming series against Sri Lanka while injured pacer Wahab Riaz could also make a return subject to fitness, chief selector Haroon Rasheed said Wednesday.
All-rounder Shahid Afridi will lead the squad for the two matches to be played in Colombo on July 30 and August 1.
Shah, 29, took 24 wickets in Pakistan`s 2-1 win in the three-Test series, taking him to third position in the official world bowlers` rankings after just ten matches.
The leg-spin bowler, who has won praise from Australian legend Shane Warne, then helped Pakistan win the third one-day with figures of 4-29 to give the visitors a 2-1 lead in the five-match series.
Both teams were playing the fourth one-day in Colombo on Wednesday.
Chief selector Rasheed said: "Shah has emerged as a strike bowler who takes wickets, and in T20 cricket a bowler having this ability is a big plus. That is why he has been included."
Shah played the last of his two Twenty20 internationals in Zimbabwe in September 2011 but has so far failed to pick up a wicket in the format.
Explaining Riaz`s inclusion, Rasheed said he hoped the left-arm paceman, who has been the pick of Pakistan`s pacers in recent months, would soon be bowling after hurting his hand during the second Test.
"Riaz is expected to start bowling from July 24 after recovering from hand injury and would be included in the squad upon clearance that he is injury free and bowling freely.
"Otherwise Ziaul Haq, a budding young fast bowler having toured recently with Pakistan `A`, would take his place in the team."
Left-arm paceman Sohail Tanvir was recalled after being axed from the squad for the two T20 matches against Zimbabwe in Lahore -- Pakistan`s first international series at home for six years.
Talented but temperamental batsman Umar Akmal was also included despite team management complaints about his attitude during the 2015 World Cup, which forced his omission from the one-day squad.
Umar featured in both the Twenty20s against Zimbabwe, scoring four and 30.
Squad: Shahid Afridi (captain), Ahmed Shehzad, Nauman Anwar, Mohammad Hafeez, Mukhtar Ahmed, Umar Akmal, Shoaib Malik, Mohammad Rizwan, Sarfraz Ahmed, Yasir Shah, Sohail Tanvir, Imad Wasim, Anwar Ali, Mohammad Irfan, Wahab Riaz or Ziaul Haq.