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29 November 2023

Khan injury scare as Pakistan's problems mount

Pakistan's fast bowler Sohail Khan (back) celebrates the wicket of Bangladesh batsman Anamul Haque during a one-day international World Cup warm-up cricket match at Blacktown Sports Park in Sydney on Februry 9, 2015. (AFP)


Pakistan were hit by a fresh World Cup injury scare on Monday when fast bowler Sohail Khan was sidelined by a calf problem during a warm-up game against Bangladesh.

The 30-year-old, a surprise inclusion in the squad, bowled six overs and took one wicket before he walked off the field at Sydney's Blacktown Olympic Park Oval.

Although the injury is not thought to be serious, it comes after frontline pacemen Umar Gul and Junaid Khan were forced out with knee and thigh problems respectively.

On Sunday, opener Mohammad Hafeez also withdrew from the 15-man squad with an ankle injury as fitness problems mount for the 1992 champions.

"Sohail suffered a cramp in his calf muscle and as a precaution he did not bowl after six overs," said a team media officer.

"He can still run without any problems and we hope he will be fine soon."

Pakistan's bowling stocks are being severely tested after Gul was ruled out before the squad was announced and Junaid Khan had to withdraw later.

Star spinner Saeed Ajmal's remodelled action was declared legal on Saturday but the ruling came too late for his inclusion in Pakistan's squad.

Paceman Rahat Ali and opener Nasir Jamshed have been given late call-ups and will join the squad on Wednesday.

Pakistan will play another warm-up game, against England, on Wednesday, before opening their World Cup campaign against arch-rivals and defending champions India on Sunday.