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Pakistan finalises 23-member squad for SAFF Women Cup

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KARACHI: The coaching staff of the Pakistan women’s football team has decided to retain at least seven members from the team that last played an international match for Pakistan in 2014 in the squad for the upcoming South Asian Football Federation (SAFF) Women Cup.

Reliable sources have confirmed that the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) has already finalised the list of 23 players, which also includes two overseas players, for the SAFF Women Cup that is scheduled to commence in Nepal on September 6.

Sources privy to matter have confirmed that Hajra Khan, Malika-e-Noor, Nisha Ashraf, Roshan Ali, Sahar Zaman, Mahpara Shahid and Zulfia Nazir are included in the 23-member squad finalised for the tournament — they were also the part of Pakistan women team that played last international game in 2014.

Maliha Nasir, Mishal Akram and Rameen Fareed who have previously played age-group tournaments for the country are also named in Pakistan’s senior squad while Atika Nasir — who was invited for the initial camp in 2014 is also among the players picked by the coaching staff for the upcoming series.

UAE-based Maria Khan and UK-based Nadia Khan will also represent Pakistan in the next month’s tournament.

Other players picked for Pakistan’s squad include Alina Isphani, Anmool Hira, Ghazala Aamir, Khadija Kazmi, Marvi Baig, Nizalia Siddique, Sara Khan, Shahida Amin, Shanza Nazir and Suha Hirani.

PFF had earlier announced 35 players for the training camp in Lahore and after two weeks, the camp was curtailed to 25 players.

PFF has not decided yet on who will wear the captain’s band in the tournament. In the last tournament, the team was led by Hajra Khan. However, Maria — UAE based footballer — has also impressed the officials during the camp in Lahore.

The PFF had last week announced Adeel Rizki as head coach for the women’s team while Waleed Javed was named his assistant and Ehsanullah was named goal keeping coach.

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Rise in ICC Men’s Twenty20 International Rankings for Pakistani Players

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Pakistan skipper Babar Azam moved up the T20I batting rankings to take third place after scoring 33 runs off of just 10 balls in Tuesday’s nail-biting run chase against Canada. In contrast, Mohammad Rizwan, who batted at wicketkeeper, retired to fourth place.

In the bowling rankings, returning pacer Mohammad Amir rose 65 places to 82nd, and Naseem Shah climbed 21 places to joint-thirty-third.

Also, left-arm spinner Imad Wasim stormed up the rankings, taking 34th position. While Shadab fell three spots to fourteenth, Imad rose one spot to eleventh in the T20I all-rounder rankings.

The ICC Men’s Twenty20 International Bowling Rankings have Pakistan’s star pacer Shaheen Shah Afridi falling to number twelve, despite the fact that he has not played up to his usual standards. The right-handed speedster Haris Rauf, on the other hand, fell two spots to 36th.

After taking two wickets in a Twenty20 International match against New Zealand, Afghanistan’s veteran all-rounder Mohammad Nabi was named the “big winner” in the most recent rankings update by the major cricketing organization.

As a result of his recent two-wicket haul against New Zealand in Guyana, the 39-year-old Mohammad Nabi jumped to the No. 1 slot on the list for all-rounders, making him the clear winner in the latest rankings update, according to a press statement from the ICC.

In the wake of a massive shuffle at the top of the T20I rankings for all-rounders, Nabbila improves by two spots to take first place, with Marcus Stoinis of Australia climbing three spots to take second place and Shakib Al Hasan falling four spots to fifth.

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A petition has been filed criticizing the cricket team’s bad performance in the T20 World Cup.

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A lawyer in Gujranwala has submitted a formal request to the court, urging for legal measures to be taken in response to the substandard performance of the national cricket team.

The petition has been lodged in the court of the district and sessions judge, citing sections 22A and 22B of the Pakistan Penal Code. It identifies all individuals involved, including captain Babar Azam, team management, and the coach, as parties.

The petitioner voiced profound apprehension at the underwhelming performance of the national cricket team, deeming it a squandering of funds and a breach of the nation’s confidence. The petition alleges that the team jeopardized millions of rupees and the nation’s integrity, claiming that the players and team management chose financial gain over the honor of the country.

In addition, the petition emphasizes the significant emotional distress experienced by individuals during matches against America and India, considering these performances to be particularly offensive. The user is requesting a suspension of the team until a detailed investigation is carried out by the interior secretary and a comprehensive report is finalized.

The petitioner further condemns the intrusion of political personalities in the team’s matters, contending that whenever political selections are made as coaches and chairmen, it results in the team’s decline.

The court has instructed the police to respond to the petition by June 21.

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Mohammad Rizwan has achieved an undesirable record in the T20 World Cup.

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Pakistan achieved the target of 107 runs with only three wickets lost and 15 balls remaining, thanks to a solid half-century by Rizwan.

The right-handed batsman achieved an undefeated score of 53 runs from an equal number of deliveries, including three boundaries and one six. This is the initial fifty runs scored by a Pakistani batsman in the current tournament.

Nevertheless, Rizwan required 52 deliveries to achieve his fifty runs, making it the most time-consuming half-century in the whole T20 World Cup’s history.

South Africa’s David Miller previously held the record for scoring a half-century in 50 balls against the Netherlands at the same stadium.

Rizwan commenced the batting for Pakistan alongside Saim Ayub (6), but they were unable in providing the Pakistani team with a satisfactory beginning when Ayub lost his wicket in the fifth over, leaving the team with a mere 20 runs on the scoreboard.

Subsequently, Skipper Babar Azam joined Rizwan on the batting crease, and the pair effectively guided the team’s pursuit of runs with a resilient partnership. Babar and his partner contributed 63 runs for the second wicket until Babar was dismissed by Dilon Heyliger in the 15th over.

He achieved a scoring rate of one run per ball, accumulating a total of 33 runs, aided by a single boundary and a six.

Mohammad Rizwan briefly collaborated with Fakhar Zaman, who only managed to score four runs and was out on the second delivery of the 18th over, with the team needing just three more runs to win.

Usman Khan secured victory for Pakistan by elegantly directing the ball towards the midwicket area, resulting in a two-run score.

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