Imad, Hafeez back in Pakistan's ODI squad, Amir misses out

Imad Wasim conceded just eight runs in his four overs AFP

Imad Wasim and Mohammad Hafeez find themselves back in Pakistan's 15-man ODI squad after spells of varying lengths out of the side. Hafeez sat out of Pakistan's five ODIs against Zimbabwe in July and was dropped from the squad for the Asia Cup altogether, while Imad hasn't played a 50-over international in 2018. Both of them are part of the squad that will face New Zealand in a three-match ODI series next week, which is otherwise notable for Mohammad Amir's continued exclusion from the side. His ouster from the one-day setup meaning he has now been dropped from all three formats this month.

The squad is otherwise largely unchanged from Pakistan's Asia Cup side, with Shan Masood, included in that 16-man side (though he didn't play any match) the only other played omitted. Asif Ali retains his place, while Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq and Hafeez are the three opening options named. Sahibzada Farhan, who averages over 53 in List A cricket in Pakistan and was included in Pakistan's squad for the T20I series against Australia and New Zealand, has failed to earn a call-up to the 50-over side. Shaheen Afridi, Junaid Khan, Hasan Ali and Usman Shinwari are the four fast bowlers in the side, while Shadab Khan and Imad are the specialist spin options.

Despite their splendid T20I form over the past two years, Pakistan are coming off a disappointing Asia Cup tournament, where they failed to make the final after losing to Bangladesh in a must-win encounter. It was part of a trend of shaky performances throughout the competition in which they were soundly beaten by India twice, and only managed to squeak past Afghanistan in a final-over thriller.

Despite a superb record in Test cricket in the UAE, Pakistan have struggled there in ODI cricket ever since they relocated. In 61 ODIs there over the past decade, they have won 28 and lost 33. Excluding Sri Lanka, against whom they have won 12 of 15 encounters in the UAE, Pakistan's record is an even more unflattering 16 wins and 30 losses. They have lost both series they played against New Zealand over that period, most recently in 2014, when the visitors triumphed 3-2.

The first two ODIs will be held in Abu Dhabi on 7 and 9 November, with the third to take place in Dubai on 13 November.