Pakistan skipper Babar Azam has raised the possibility of pacer Naseem Shah missing some of the initial games the upcoming ICC World Cup 2023, scheduled to be held in India from October 5.
Earlier, Naseem was ruled out of the ongoing Asia Cup after he injured his right shoulder during the Super 4 clash against arch-rivals India.
As per reports, he has been asked to rest by the Pakistan team’s medical panel to rest ahead the showpiece event.
On the other hand, fast bowler Haris Rauf was not permitted to bowl against India as a precaution on the reserve day as he had a side strain which is reportedly improving.
“Haris Rauf is not bad. He’s just got a little bit of a side strain, but he’s recovering before the World Cup. Naseem Shah also… they have a couple of missed matches, I don’t know [how long] the recovery [is], but in my opinion, Naseem Shah also [will be] in the World Cup later on. But let’s see,” Babar said during a post-match press conference.
When asked about any backup plans in case the duo didn’t recover in time for the showpiece event, the Pakistan skipper said: “I’ll tell you later. Not telling you our Plan B now.”
As of now, Naseem has been flown to Dubai from Colombo for undergoing scans of the muscle injury below his right shoulder.
Earlier, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) had called up Zaman Khan and Shahnawaz Dahani as backups for Naseem and Haris for Super 4 game against Sri Lanka.
Notably, the islanders defeated Pakistan by two wickets in a virtual semi-final of the ongoing Asia Cup 2023 at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo on Thursday to set up a clash against India in the final.