Umar Gul returns to Pakistan's ODI squad
Pakistan have recalled fast bowler Umar Gul to their ODI squad. The 32-year-old last played 50-over cricket for his country in April 2015. Gul is one of four fast bowlers - including the uncapped Hasan Ali - chosen to play against England and Ireland from August 18.
Legspinner Yasir Shah has also made a return to limited-overs cricket for the first time since November 2015. He had been suspended for a doping offence and was unavailable for selection when Pakistan had toured New Zealand in January 2016. Seven out of the 16 men from that squad have been sidelined.
Fast bowler Mohammad Irfan was one of those to be left out. In the past, Pakistan have handled him with great care, mindful of his injury-prone nature. His pace and bounce have been seen as assets, but with only 12 wickets in nine ODIs over the past 12 months, he has been overlooked by the new selection panel led by Inzamam-ul-Haq.
Others who haven't made the cut include Ahmed Shehzad, Sohaib Maqsood and Anwar Ali. While Shehzad has fallen out of favour due to issues with indiscipline and inconsistency, Maqsood and Anwar have struggled with their recent form. Maqsood has not done much since starting his career with back-to-back fifties, while Anwar has gone wicketless in four of his last six matches.
Sami Aslam, who made two high-quality half-centuries in the Edgbaston Test against England, was drafted in, as was Mohammad Nawaz, who made his Pakistan debut in the Asia Cup in February. Nawaz is yet to take an international wicket, but had a productive time in the Pakistan Super League where he finished with 13 wickets at an average of 18. He was also part of the A team tour to England this July.
Meanwhile Hasan, a 22-year-old right-arm seamer, is the only squad member without any experience in international cricket. He made his List A debut in 2013 and has taken 40 wickets in 21 matches at an average of 22.87. Like Nawaz, he has recent experience of English conditions thanks to his inclusion in Pakistan's A team tour last month.
"While picking the squad, the team management and skipper were consulted and all concerned gave their consent in this regard," chief selector Inzamam said in a statement issued by PCB. "The team has been selected keeping in mind the conditions and the recent performances of some players in domestic and A Team tours. The team is a fine blend of experience and youth and the selectors believe that this team will do well."
Gul's return to the Pakistan team has come two months after he had accused the selectors of "double standards". Though he has had problems with fitness, missing large chunks of cricket in 2013 and 2014 due to a knee injury, he said he had been overlooked for the 2015 World Cup despite meeting the minimum fitness requirements. After he was left out of the Test squad for England and even the national camps in Abbottabad and Lahore, Gul said he felt the selectors had lost faith in him.
Pakistan's ODI squad: Azhar Ali (capt), Sharjeel Khan, Sami Aslam, Mohammad Hafeez, Babar Azam, Shoaib Malik, Sarfraz Ahmed, Mohammad Rizwan, Mohammad Amir, Wahab Riaz, Umar Gul, Hasan Ali, Imad Wasim, Yasir Shah, Mohammad Nawaz
Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo's Pakistan correspondent. @kalson