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News

Haris Rauf ruled out of remaining two Tests against England

The Pakistan fast bowler strained his quad on the first day of his debut Test in Rawalpindi

Danyal Rasool
Danyal Rasool
05-Dec-2022
Haris Rauf injured his right quad on Test debut  •  Getty Images

Haris Rauf injured his right quad on Test debut  •  Getty Images

Pakistan fast bowler Haris Rauf has been ruled out of the remainder of the Test series against England*. The 29-year old, who made his debut in the first Test , stepped on the ball while fielding on the first day in Rawalpindi, leading to a grade-II strain in his right quad.
Rauf was sent for MRI scans and did not bowl again for the rest of the game. He endured a forgettable debut, conceding 78 runs in 13 overs, and was the most expensive fast bowler on the first day when England scored 506 runs. He batted in both of Pakistan's innings and made scores of 12 and 0.
Rauf will now travel to Lahore where he will begin his rehabilitation at the National High Performance Centre.
Rauf's injury, coupled with Shaheen Afridi's unavailability this series, potentially opens the door for Pakistan calling up a fast bowler from outside the 18-man squad initially named for these three Tests. Mohammad Wasim Jnr is the only other specialist in that group, but in Hasan Ali and Mohammad Abbas, Pakistan have options to turn to from outside those ranks.
Wasim's inclusion would mean yet another debut for a Pakistan player this series, with four new caps handed out in Rawalpindi. As such, the experience the likes of Abbas and Hasan provide could be factors favouring their involvement. Mohammad Ali and Zahid Mahmood, too, had indifferent performances in Rawalpindi, with the legspinner Mahmood conceding 235 runs in the first innings, the highest ever for a debutant. He did pick up four wickets though.
That means a like-for-like replacement for Rauf is possible, though whether Pakistan choose to go into their second successive Test without an established allrounder remains an open question. Faheem Ashraf and Mohammad Nawaz are both part of the squad, and picking either would invariably lead to a rejig of the side's balance in Multan. In Rawalpindi, Pakistan went with four specialist bowlers, though that elongated a tail that had Rauf himself coming in at No. 8, with Naseem Shah, Ali and Mahmood to follow.
The second Test starts on December 9 in Multan and the third on December 17 in Karachi.
*0532GMT December 6, 2022: The story was updated after a statement from the PCB

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