Pakistan set to tour Sri Lanka for two Test matches in July 2022

Pakistan last toured Sri Lanka in 2015 when they won the Test series by 2-1

Pakistan men’s cricket team will tour Sri Lanka for two-match Test series in July; a Sri Lanka Cricket official confirmed it on media on Wednesday (June 22).

The first Test of the series will be played at the Galle International Cricket Stadium from July 16 to 20 while the second Test is scheduled to be played on July 24 at the R. Premadasa International Cricket Stadium in Colombo.

Pakistan will reach Sri Lanka on July 6 to play a three-day warm-up game in Colombo, which will start on July 11. The series will be part of the ICC Men’s World Test Championship Cycle of 2021-2023.

Pakistan last landed on Sri Lankan soil in 2015 for the three-match Test series which they won by 2-1 while the limited over games were also part of the tour during that series. 

Yasir Shah is fit again to return to Pakistan’s Test squad

Veteran Pakistan leg spinner Yasir Shah is fit again to get back to the Pakistan Test squad. The 36-year-old was on the sidelines following a thumb injury he picked last year in the National T20 Cup last year.

Shah is added to the 18-player squad for the upcoming two-match Test series against Sri Lanka in July.

There have been call-ups for the other all-rounders such as Mohammad Nawaz, who was taken back from the Test squad against Australia following an injury, and the uncapped Salman Ali Agha.

Pakistan squad: Babar Azam (captain), Mohammad Rizwan (vice-captain, wicketkeeper), Abdullah Shafique, Azhar Ali, Faheem Ashraf, Fawad Alam, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Imam-ul-Haq, Mohammad Nawaz, Naseem Shah, Nauman Ali, Salman Ali Agha, Sarfaraz Ahmed (wicketkeeper), Saud Shakeel, Shaheen Afridi, Shan Masood and Yasir Shah

Yasir last featured in a Test match in August 2021, he was also instrumental in Pakistan’s Test series victory in Sri Lanka back in 2015 and took 24 wickets at an average of 19.33. He becomes part of the squad at the place of Sajid Khan.

“We have selected this squad considering the conditions in Sri Lanka and have equipped the team with the best possible resources,”

said chief selector Muhammad Wasim. 

“Our spin department is boosted with the return of Yasir Shah, who proved himself as a match-winner in Sri Lanka on our last tour and Sajid Khan has made the way for him. The spin department also includes two spin all-rounders in Mohammad Nawaz and Salman Ali Agha and left-arm orthodox Nauman Ali.

“Salman Ali Agha has shown consistent performances with the bat in the past three seasons and he is a handy off-spin option.

“Our team has recently put strong performances in Bangladesh and although results against Australia were not ideal we displayed solid cricket and for that reason, we have retained the core to instill consistency and continuity and have trimmed the squad size following the relaxation in Covid-19-induced travel restrictions.

“These two matches are extremely crucial for our side as we have World Test Championship points at stake. I wish our boys all the best and I am sure they will make us proud.”

The Pakistan team will assemble in Islamabad on June 25 to undergo a seven-day training camp at the Pindi Cricket Stadium. They will depart for Sri Lanka on July 6 to play the first Test scheduled from July 16 in Galle.