Thatscricket - News - Akhtar among probables for Kiwi tour

Published: Monday, January 22, 2001, 23:00 [IST]
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Karachi: Pace bowler Shoaib Akhtar was back in contention for a place on the Pakistan team on Sunday as officials announced 19 probables for next month's New Zealand tour."I am ready for a comeback but I know first I will have to prove my fitness in the trial matches," Akhtar, who has not played active cricket since May last year, told AFP.Akhtar - dubbed the 'Rawalpindi Express' - was named among 19 probables announced for trial matches to select the Pakistan team. Middle order batsman Ejaz Ahmed and former captains Aamir Sohail and Rashid Latif were not considered for selection.Pakistan will tour New Zealand from February 17 to play five One-day Internationals and three Tests. "I think with the grace of the Almighty my fitness nightmares are over and I will be enjoying active cricket again," the 25-year-old said.Akhtar missed Pakistan's tour of the West Indies in May last year and his failure to regain fitness cancelled his lucrative contract with English county Nottinghamshire."I am thankful to the Pakistan Cricket Board and its chairman Lieutenant General Tauqir Zia for taking full care of me and giving me full facilities," he said.The 19 probables will play five One-day trial matches between January 26 and February 2 before the final squad is announced.The probables: Moin Khan, Saeed Anwar, Imran Nazir, Salim Elahi, Inzamam-ul-Haq, Yousuf Youhanna, Shahid Afridi, Waseem Akram, Abdur Razzaq, Waqar Younis, Saqlain Mushtaq, Shoaib Akhtar, Azhar Mahmood, Mushtaq Ahmed, Yasir Arafat, Fazle Akbar, Faisal Iqbal, Younis Khan and Arshad Khan.

Copyright AFP 2000

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