Pakistan announce 15-man squad for the World Cup

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Pakistan announce 15-man squad for the World Cup
The Pakistan selection committee, headed by former opening batsman Khan, has announced the 15-man squad for the 2011 World Cup. The committee has decided to field the same team which will represent the country in the six match one-day international
(ODI) series against New Zealand with only one omission. Seamer Tanvir Ahmed, who has performed well in Test matches for Pakistan, has been dropped. However, he will remain a part of the ODI squad in the upcoming series.
Pakistan has also opted to leave out one of its most prolific run score Mohammad Yousaf. Yousaf was also axed for the New Zealand tour on which he expressed his disappointment. It was speculated that the veteran was omitted from the squad due to lack of
fitness and injury issues. However, Yousaf rebuffed these rumors stating that he has gained full fitness and is perplexed over the news of his exclusion.
Other than these two omissions, there are no real surprises in the squad composition. Kamran Akmal has retained his spot in the World Cup squad after he was given the green signal by the Pakistan Cricket Board’s (PCB) integrity committee. PCB was denying
clearance to the wicket-keeper batsman, along with Shoaib Malik and; but after thorough investigation Akmal was granted an entry into the squad.
In the World Cup, Akmal is likely to be partnered with either Mohammad Hafeez or Ahmed Shehzad to open the batting. The middle-order slots will be contested between Misbah-ul-Haq, Younis, Asad Shafiq and Umar Akmal. Shahid Afridi and Abdul Razzaq have
been retained to provide some power hitting towards the end.
In the bowling department, the pace attack will be spearheaded by the aging star Shoaib Akhtar. Other fast bowling options include Umar Gul, Wahab Riaz, Sohail Tanvir and Abdul Razzaq.
In-form left-arm spinner Abdur Rehman will fight for his place in the starting eleven with Saeed Ajmal. It will not be a surprise if both players are able to secure their place in the team on the spin friendly pitches of the World Cup.   
The ICC has given PCB the option to include three players Salman Butt, Mohammad Amir and Mohammad Asif to the squad if they are cleared of the Spot-fixing allegations levied on them. The verdict of their case will be announced on the 5th of February.
The World Cup begins on the 19th of February in  
Squad: Shahid Afridi, Misbah-ul-Haq, Mohammad Hafeez, Kamran Akmal (wk), Younis Khan, Asad Shafiq, Umar Akmal, Abdul Razzaq, Abdur Rehman, Saeed Ajmal, Shoaib Akhtar, Umar Gul, Wahab Riaz, Sohail Tanvir, Ahmed Shehzad.   



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