Babar Azam ruled out of New Zealand T20 series due to thumb fracture


Pakistan cricket captain Babar Azam will not be available for the upcoming New Zealand T20Is after suffering a fracture in his right thumb during Sunday morning’s practice session.

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) confirmed the development in a statement released on Sunday, which stated that Azam suffered the injury during a throw-down session after which he was taken to a local hospital where X-rays confirmed the fracture.

“As such, Babar will be unable to attend nets for at least 12 days, meaning he will not be available for the December 18, 20 and 22, T20Is to be played in Auckland, Hamilton and Napier, respectively,” the statement reads.

Doctors will continue to monitor his injury in the meantime, before they confirm his participation in the first Test match, scheduled for Dec 26 in Bay Oval.

Imamul Haq had also suffered a fracture in his left thumb during a throw-down session the previous day. He was advised a 12-day rest which confirmed his non-availability for the Pakistan Shaheens’ four-day match against New Zealand ‘A’, which starts in Whangarei on Dec 17.

Vice-captain Shadab Khan is also carrying a groin niggle, which limited his participation in Sunday’s net sessions to batting only, according to the statement. A decision on his participation in the Auckland T20I will be made closer to the match, it added.