The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) announced Thursday that fast bowler Hasan Ali has been ruled out of the upcoming match against South Africa as the Green Shirts gear up for a must-win clash.
“Fast bowler Hasan Ali is unavailable for Pakistan’s match against South Africa as he is unwell,” the board said in a brief statement.
Hasan suffered a fever last night, but he is recovering well, the PCB said, adding that the pacer will be given rest to recover fully ahead of the remaining games.
Although there was no official word, well-informed sources had told Geo News that fast bowler Mohammad Wasim Junior is likely to replace fever-hit Ali in Pakistan’s squad.
After starting brightly with wins over the Netherlands and Sri Lanka, the 1992 champions were well beaten by India and Australia before being humiliated by neighbours Afghanistan last time out.
On Friday, they face another test of their resources against free-scoring South Africa who have four wins in five games and have shrugged off their shock loss to the Netherlands.
With four group games to play, Pakistan can still make the semi-finals but there is little margin for error.
Pakistan all-rounder Shadab Khan insisted today that his under-performing teammates believe “miracles can happen” as the former champions enter a “do-or-die” battle to rescue their faltering World Cup campaign.
“If you have belief, miracles happen,” said Shadab, the deputy to skipper Babar Azam.