Veteran Pakistan leg-spinner Yasir Shah was on Monday not picked for the upcoming two-match Test series against Bangladesh after he failed to recover from a thumb injury.
The Pakistani selectors announced a 20-man squad for the series with the return of opener Imam-ul-Haq and off-spinner Bilal Asif to the national team.
Chief selector Muhammad Wasim said Bilal was picked in place of Yasir, who is still recovering from a thumb injury, which has forced him to miss the first-class matches of the ongoing Quaid-e-Azam Trophy.
Yasir who is Pakistan’s most experienced Test bowler currently played in the last drawn Test series in West Indies in July-August.
The selectors have also included off-spinner Sajid Khan and leg-spinner Zahid Mahmood, while young pacer Shahnawaz Dahani has been dropped without a chance to make his debut. He was part of the Test team that toured the West Indies.
The two Tests will be played in Chittagong (26-30 November) and Dhaka (4-8 December).
Left-handed batsman Imam has been recalled after his stellar performance in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy, in which he scored 488 runs in five innings, including an unbeaten double century.
Imam played his 11th and last Test against Australia in Adelaide in November/December 2019.
Bilal who last played in 2019 took 16 wickets in five Test matches.
The selectors have also included uncapped batsman Kamran Ghulam, who was not picked for the West Indies tour after being named for the home Test series against South Africa earlier this year.
Kamran is currently with Pakistan Shaheen in Sri Lanka where he scored an unbeaten 58 and 45 in two innings of the rain-hit two-match four-day series.
Wasim said, “We have selected the team after discussions with the team management and keeping in mind the likely make-up of the opposition and the conditions of the Test match.
“Since we already have four frontline fast bowlers, we have allowed Haris Rauf and Shahnawaz Dahani to return to Pakistan after the T20Is to play in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy and prepare for the Australia Test.
“Bangladesh are a strong side in their backyard but we have the resources, talent and experience to perform strongly and then take that momentum into the Australia Test, which will be part of the ICC World Test Championship.”
Pakistan Test Team: Babar Azam (Captain), Mohammad Rizwan (Vice-Captain), Abdullah Shafiq, Abid Ali, Azhar Ali, Bilal Asif, Faheem Ashraf, Fawad Alam, Hasan Ali, Imam-ul-Haq, Kamran Ghulam, Mohammad Abbas, Mohammad Nawaz, Naseem Shah, Nauman Ali, Sajid Khan, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Saud Shakeel, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Zahid Mahmood.