AUCKLAND, New Zealand (AP) — Pakistan captain Shadab Khan won the toss and elected to bat Friday in the first of three Twenty20 cricket internationals against New Zealand at Eden Park.
Shadhab is leading Pakistan for the first time in the absence of Babar Azam, who has been forced out of the tour after sustaining a broken thumb in training.
New Zealand is being led for the first time by Mitchell Santner. The allrounder was due to captain the team in the third T20 international against the West Indies on Nov. 30 but the match was rained out.
In Babar’s absence wicketkeeper Mohammad Rizwan will open for Pakistan in partnership with Abdullah Shafique and Haider Ali will bat at No. 3 ahead of Mohammad Hafeez and Shadab.
New Zealand named fast bowler Jacob Duffy to make his international debut. None of the players who played in the recent test series against the West Indies is available for the first match of the series.
New Zealand: Martin Guptill, Tim Seifert, Devon Conway, Glenn Phillips, Mark Chapman, James Neesham, Mitchell Santner (captain), Blair Tickner, Ish Sodhi, Scott Kuggeleijn, Jacob Duffy.
Pakistan: Mohammad Rizwan, Abdullah Shafique, Haider Ali, Mohammad Hafeez, Shadab Khan (captain), Khushdil Shah, Imad Wasim, Faheem Ashraf, Wahab Riaz, Haris Rauf, Shaheen Afridi.
Umpires: Shaun Haig and Wayne Knights, New Zealand.
TV umpire: Chris Brown, New Zealand. Match referee: Jeff Crowe, New Zealand