Pakistan pace bowler Shaheen Shah Afridi is in doubt for next month’s three-match Test series against England after doctors advised at least two weeks of rehab on a knee injury sustained in Sunday’s Twenty20 World Cup final.
The 22-year-old left-arm quick hurt himself while taking a catch against England in Melbourne and was unable to complete his four overs as his side lost by five wickets.
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) said a scan on Afridi’s right knee showed no signs of injury, and his discomfort was likely due to “flexion” as he fell after dismissing Harry Brook in the deep.
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“Shaheen will undergo a rehabilitation and conditioning program that has been designed to strengthen his knee,” the PCB said in a statement, adding that the process would take at least two weeks.
“Shaheen’s return to international cricket will be subject to the champion fast bowler’s successful completion of the rehabilitation programme and the following go-ahead by the medical staff,” it said.
Shaheen, who hadn’t played for months before the Twenty20 World Cup after injuring the same right knee earlier in the year, will need time to return to match fitness before tackling the rigours of Test cricket.
The first Test between Pakistan and England starts in Rawalpindi on December 1, followed by Tests in Multan (December 9-13) and Karachi (17-21).
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Shaheen has been Pakistan’s premier bowler in all three formats for the last three years, taking 99 Test, 66 ODI and 58 T20 wickets.