The blazing wicket-keeper batsman of Afghanistan 15-men World Cup squad, Mohammad Shahzad gave a big blow to his squad ahead of their match against ICC favourites New Zealand. One of the crucial batsmen of Afghanistan squad, Shahzad has been ruled out of 50-over prestigious tournament after failing to recover from injury. Though, the Afghanistan national cricket team selectors have roped in equally talented wicket keeper-batsman, Ikram Ali Khil for the rest of the event but Shahzad’s absence in the squad probably could affect their performance in glitzy Cricket Cup. However, Ali has just stepped-in international cricket format as the 20-year-old young cricketer made his international debut for Afghanistan in March 2019 against Ireland squad. The brilliant first-class cricketer had played only two One Day Internationals and solo Test match so far.
There is no doubt in the fact that Shazad was out of form in the opening matches for his side as he scored only seven runs off 12 balls in the battle against Sri Lanka. In 2019 World Cup opener, all eyes were on opening batsman Shahzad against Aussies, he scored a duck and lost his wicket to the star Australian pacer Mitchell Starc.
Notably, Afghanistan has not won any of the 2019 World Cup match so far. In their opening match against five-time World Champions Australians, Naib and his team lost the game by seven wickets while in their second face-off against Sri Lankans on June 4, Afghans fall behind just 34 runs.
The 31-year-old explosive opener experienced the painful knee injury during the warm-up fixture against Pakistan. Despite the injury scare, Afghans sealed the match with a successful win of three wickets against Pakistan.
Gulbadin Naib-led Afghanistan squad will next battle with Kane Williamson and company in the hope turn their losing momentum on June 8 at County Ground, Taunton.
Afghanistan Squad for ICC World Cup 2019: Gulbadin Naib (Skipper), Ikram Ali Khil (wicket-keeper), Noor Ali Zadran, Hazratullah Zazai, Rahmat Shah, Asghar Afghan, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Najibullah Zadran, Samiullah Shinwari, Mohammad Nabi, Rashid Khan, Dawlat Zadran, Aftab Alam, Hamid Hassan and Mujeeb Ur Rahman