Fast bowler Mohammad Amir and batsman Haris Sohail have withdrawn from Pakistan's squad for the upcoming England tour.

Amir, who had retired from Test cricket last year, and was thus only eligible for selection for the three-match T20I series, pulled out so that he could be present for the birth of his second child in August, which is when the T20Is are scheduled to be played.

There was a spot of confusion* regarding the exact reason for Sohail's withdrawal. The PCB had initially said that Sohail had opted out because of "personal reasons", but later issued a statement confirming that he had, in fact, taken "the option [given by the board to the players] of pulling out of the tour due to the Covid-19 pandemic".

The Pakistan players and the support staffers are expected to arrive in England several weeks before the start of the first match to be able to train in the country, as well as complete the mandatory quarantine period for all foreigners travelling to the UK. That means the side will spend over two months in England. The touring party will form a "bubble" where they will not interact with anyone outside of the group, and regular tests for Covid-19 will be conducted on the tour.

The three Tests and three T20Is will all be played behind closed doors Additionally, earlier this week, the ICC had approved the use of substitutes if a player showed symptoms of Covid-19 during a Test match. Players' families will not be allowed to accompany them.

The PCB said they would announce a 42-person touring team, with 28 players and 14 support staff to accompany them. Pakistan will be the second side to tour England since the Covid-19 pandemic, with West Indies set to play three Tests in England starting July 8. Three West Indies players - Shimron Hetmyer, Keemo Paul and Darren Bravo - withdrew from that tour, citing concerns around the coronavirus.

*Haris Sohail's reason for withdrawing was corrected at 11.25am GMT on June 12, 2020

Danyal Rasool is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo. @Danny61000