Pakistan host New Zealand in April and May for a 5-match T20I and 5-match ODI series across 3 venues Lahore, Rawalpindi and Karachi starting April 14 and ending May 7 2023. While the tour is a follow-up series to the one postponed in September 2021, the ODI series will not be part of the Super League. It will however form part of both teams’ preparations for the 2023 Cricket World Cup in India later this year.
New Zealand had pulled out of the earlier tour just before the start of the 1st ODI in 2021 citing a security threat. Since then, this will be the 2nd time they are touring Pakistan in 2023. The Kiwis were in the country in December 2022 and January 2023 to play 2 Tests that ended 0-0 and a 3-match ODI series that New Zealand won 2-1. In lieu of the previously postponed series, the teams will play extra games on this tour.
Regular captain Babar Azam and pace spearhead Shaheen Shah Afridi who makes his international cricket return after 4 months out due to injury, make a comeback as Pakistan named full-strength squads for both the ODI and T20I series. Afridi helped Lahore Qalandars successfully defend its Pakistan Super League title last month with a haul of 19 wickets after recovering from a knee injury.
Mohammad Rizwan, Fakhar Zaman, and Haris Rauf also make a comeback to the team after being rested for 3-match T20I series against Afghanistan which they lost in the UAE recently.
The fallout of that Afghan debacle is Azam Khan, Abdullah Shafique and Mohammad Wasim Junior being dropped from the T20I squad. The meteoric rise of Ihsanullah;’s star continues as he gets his maiden ODI call-up and while Haris Sohail and Abdullah Shafique make the team, Kamran Ghulam, Mohammad Hasnain and Shahnawaz Dahani have been dropped.
Pakistan have a new head coach in Grant Bradburn, 56 who played seven Tests and 11 one-day internationals for New Zealand before taking up coaching. Legendary Pakistan icon Saqlain Mushtaq will be the new assistant coach and Andrew Puttick of South Africa joins the staff as the batting coach. The head coach position fell vacant after Saqlain Mushtaq’s term ended in February. Abdul Rahman filled in for the three Twenty20s against Afghanistan last month.
Bradburn had previously served terms with the Pakistan team as fielding coach in 2018 and then also as the Head of High Performance coaching, before stepping down from that position in 2021, incidentally soon after Ramiz Raja became the president of the PCB.
Babar Azam (c), Shadab Khan (vc), Faheem Ashraf, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Rauf, Iftikhar Ahmed, Ihsanullah, Imad Wasim, Mohammad Haris, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan, Naseem Shah, Saim Ayub, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Shan Masood, Zaman Khan
Babar Azam (c), Shadab Khan (vc), Abdullah Shafique, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Rauf, Haris Sohail, Ihsanullah, Imam-ul-Haq, Mohammad Wasim Jr, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan, Naseem Shah, Salman Ali Agha, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Shan Masood, Usama Mir
New Zealand, fresh off white-ball series success against Sri Lanka head to Pakistan with a severely depleted squad. Most of their first-team players, including those that beat Pakistan in the ODI series in January are Indian T20 League bound. Tom Latham, who last played T20Is in 2021, will return to lead them in both formats.
The 15-member squad, similar to the one that recently hosted Sri Lanka for a white-ball series includes Cole McConchie and Benjamin Lister, yet to make their ODI debuts, with McConchie the second highest scorer across formats in New Zealand’s domestic competitions this season. It however has some big omissions including Tim Southee, Glenn Phillips, Mitchell Santner, Devon Conway, Finn Allen, Michael Bracewell and Lockie Ferguson to the Indian T20 League. While Kane Williamson was also part of the League, he has been ruled out with a knee injury.
New Zealand will be banking on the experience gained in their ODI series victory earlier this year in Pakistan. They have an ace up their sleeves in legendary Pakistan icon Saqlain Mushtaq, head coach of the Pakistan side until two months ago. Saqlain has joined the New Zealand camp as an assistant coach.
Tom Latham (c), Mark Chapman, Matt Henry, Cole McConchie, Daryl Mitchell, Rachin Ravindra, Ish Sodhi, Will Young, Chad Bowes, Dane Cleaver, Ben Lister, Adam Milne, James Neesham, Henry Shipley, Blair Tickner
Tom Latham (c), Henry Nicholls, Tom Blundell, Cole McConchie, Daryl Mitchell, Rachin Ravindra, Ish Sodhi, Will Young, Chad Bowes, Ben Lister, Adam Milne, James Neesham, Henry Shipley, Blair Tickner
Total – 29| Pakistan – 18 | New Zealand – 11
Total – 110 | Pakistan – 56 | New Zealand – 50 | No Result – 3 | Tie – 1
1st T20I – Friday, April 14, Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore (02:00 PM GMT I 07:00 PM PKT)
2nd T20I – Saturday, April 15, Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore (02:00 PM GMT I 07:00 PM PKT)
3rd T20I – Monday, April 17, Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore (02:00 PM GMT I 07:00 PM PKT)
4th T20I – Thursday, April 20, Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium, Rawalpindi (02:00 PM GMT I 07:00 PM PKT)
5th T20I – Monday, April 24, Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium, Rawalpindi (02:00 PM GMT I 07:00 PM PKT)
1st ODI – Thursday, April 27, Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium, Rawalpindi (09:00 AM GMT I 02:00 PM PKT)
2nd ODI – Saturday, April 29, Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium, Rawalpindi (09:00 AM GMT I 02:00 PM PKT)
3rd ODI – Wednesday, May 03, National Stadium, Karachi (09:00 AM GMT I 02:00 PM PKT)
4th ODI – Friday, May 05, National Stadium, Karachi (09:00 AM GMT I 02:00 PM PKT)
5th ODI – Sunday, May 07, National Stadium, Karachi (09:00 AM GMT I 02:00 PM PKT)