|Event:||Australia A in Pakistan 2005/06|
DateLine: 5th September 2005
Test discard Misbah-ul-Haq will lead a strong Pakistan A team against Australia A who arrive in Pakistan this week for a series of one-day and four-day matches, cricket officials said Monday.
"We hope that a tough Australia A series will harden our players for the forthcoming series against England," Pakistan Cricket Board's chief selector Wasim Bari told AFP.
Brad Haddin, understudy to Australian wicket-keeper Adam Gilchrist, will lead a 14-man Australia A squad for the series of three one-day and two four-day matches.
The Australia A due in Pakistan on Thursday will open the tour with the first four-day match at Rawalpindi from September 11-14.
The second four-day match will also be played at Rawalpindi September 17-20 while the three one-dayers are scheduled for September 23, 25 and 27 - all in Lahore.
The Australia A team will include four members currently with the Australian Ashes squad in England -- Haddin, batsman Brad Hodges, pacemen Shaun Tait and Stuart Clark.
Cricket Australia (CA) have named four reserves should any of the four be required to play in the fifth Ashes Test at The Oval starting from September 8.
Bari said the Australia A team consisted of quality players and would test the Pakistani youngsters to the hilt. "We are taking Australia A team very seriously and the series would give us a chance to judge our fringe players who could be played in the tougher assignments of the national team," he said.
Pakistan will host England and then India in their hectic international schedule spread from November to February next year.
Both England and India will play three Tests and five one-day matches each.
Fit-again pacers Mohammad Sami and Umar Gul are part of the 15-man Pakistan A squad while injury-prone pacer Shoaib Ahktar is likely to be tested in the second four-day match for which a final squad will be announced later.
Pakistan A squad: Misbah-ul-Haq (captain), Yasir Hameed, Salman Butt, Shoaib Malik, Bazid Khan, Asim Kamal, Zulqarnain Haider, Faisal Iqbal, Yasir Arafat, Mohammad Sami, Mohammad Asif, Umar Gul, Ashar Zaidi, Mohammad Irshad, Imran Tahir
(Article: Copyright © 2005 AFP)