ISLAMABAD: Misbah-ul-Haq will return to lead Pakistan in the three-test series against Australia next month after missing the second test against New Zealand because of suspension and a death in the family.
The selectors retained the same 16-man squad for the series against Australia which struggled against New Zealand. The Pakistan top order batting lineup looked shaky on seaming wickets in New Zealand and is trailing 1-0 in the series.
Pakistan batsmen will again be tested on Tuesday as they required 368 runs with 10 wickets in hand on the last day of the second test in Hamilton to square the series.
Middle-order batsman Babar Azam has scored a half century for Pakistan in the series so far while Younis Khan has scored only 2, 1 and 2 in the three innings.
However, Pakistan selectors have kept faith with the same players for the series against Australia, starting in Brisbane on Dec. 15.
Misbah returned home after the ICC suspended the Pakistan captain for one test match for a slow over-rate during the eight-wicket loss in the first test in Christchurch.
Misbah would have missed the second test in Hamilton in any case and flew home after the first test to attend funeral of his father-in-law.
Melbourne will host the second test from Dec. 26-30, while the third test will be played in Sydney from Jan. 3-7.
Squad: Misbah-ul-Haq (captain), Azhar Ali, Sami Aslam, Sharjeel Khan, Younis Khan, Asad Shafiq, Babar Azam, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Mohammad Rizwan, Yasir Shah, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Amir, Wahab Riaz, Rahat Ali, Sohail Khan, Imran Khan Sr.—AP