Injured Wahab out of SL Test series
Pakistan fast bowler Wahab Riaz has been ruled out of the remainder of the Test series in Sri Lanka, after he suffered a hairline fracture on the knuckle of his bowling hand on the first day of the second Test in Colombo. With both Wahab and the injured Haris Sohail being withdrawn from the squad, the PCB has drafted in batsman Babar Azam and left-arm seamer Rahat Ali as replacements*.
Azam, 20, made his international debut during the historic series against Zimbabwe last month, scoring 54 in the third ODI. Rahat last played for Pakistan in April before a hamstring injury ruled him out of the two-match Test series against Bangladesh.
Wahab is expected to be out of the game for at least two weeks and according to a PCB release, will return home after the conclusion of the ongoing Colombo Test. The release added that Azam and Rahat "will leave on Sunday early morning to Sri Lanka" and join the team.
"We had sent him (Wahab) for an X-ray last night and the result shows a hairline fracture," Pakistan team manager Naveed Akram Cheema told ESPNcricinfo. "We are not sure if he recovers ahead of the ODI series but he is at least out for two weeks. That means he can't be the part of the Test series."
Wahab was struck on the gloves by a delivery from Sri Lanka fast bowler Dushmantha Chameera while batting on the first day. Wahab bowled nine overs during Sri Lanka's innings in the last session on Thursday but he was seen struggling with his follow through and clutching his left hand between deliveries besides getting assistance from the physiotherapist at the boundary.
He stayed in the field for two hours and bowled three spells before going off. "Despite the blow on his bowling hand, he was still willing to come out and bowl many overs," Pakistan coach Waqar Younis said. "Hats off to him as he tried to give his best shot."
His injury is a significant setback to Pakistan, who were dismissed for 138 on the opening day at P Sara Oval. Pakistan, who are leading in the series after a win in the Galle Test, had opted to bat but imploded in the second session, losing eight wickets for 64 runs. With Mohammad Hafeez reported for a suspect action after the first Test, Wahab's injury puts considerable pressure on pacer Junaid Khan and the spin pair of Zulfiqar Babar and legspinner Yasir Shah.
The final Test of the series will be played in Pallekele between July 3 and 7.
*17:10 GMT: This story was updated after Babar Azam and Rahat Ali were drafted into the squad as replacements
Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo's Pakistan correspondent. @kalson