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News

Shaheen Afridi, Mohammad Rizwan, Mohammad Amir, Hasan Ali to miss latest round of County Championship

Afridi returns to Pakistan early to prepare for international duty, Haris Rauf back for Yorkshire

Shaheen Shah Afridi was among the wickets, Middlesex vs Leicestershire, LV= Insurance Championship, Division Two, Lord's, April 28, 2022

Shaheen Shah Afridi has helped Middlesex to the top of the Division Two table  •  Getty Images

Shaheen Shah Afridi will fly home to Pakistan ahead of schedule to prepare for Pakistan's white-ball series against West Indies in June, after being rested from Middlesex's latest LV= Championship match against Nottinghamshire at Lord's.
Afridi, whose 14 wickets at 25.42 have been instrumental in Middlesex's table-topping start to the season, had been due to leave for his international commitments in early June, but the club confirmed they had reached an agreement to give him an extended break to spend time with friends and family. He will return to England for the latter stages of the Vitality Blast at the end of next month.
"We have thoroughly enjoyed having Shaheen here with us at Lord's for the last month," Alan Coleman, Middlesex's head of men's performance, said. "He has settled into the group really well and has been a real asset for us on the field. It has been a pleasure working with him."
"Shaheen has played international cricket in all three forms of the game already this year and came to Middlesex off the back of a busy playing schedule, so we are fully understanding and supportive of his request to go home and recharge ahead of him representing his country.
"We look forward to his return in late June, when we hope he will be in a position to make an impactful return to us and help us in our Vitality Blast campaign."
Mohammad Rizwan, Hasan Ali and Mohammad Amir are also sitting out their respective counties' Championship fixtures this week but Haris Rauf is back for Yorkshire after a side injury.
Rauf did not bowl in the second innings of his most recent game and missed Yorkshire's draw against Essex last week but was named in their XI for the Roses match against Lancashire on Thursday morning. Hasan has been rested.
Rizwan is unavailable for Sussex's fixture away against Leicestershire due to a family bereavement. "The club would like to send our best wishes to Riz and his family at this difficult time," a statement said.
Amir, meanwhile, has a tight hamstring and will miss Gloucestershire's game against Somerset as a result. "He requires a period of rest after being away from red-ball cricket for a number of years and bowling a large number of overs in a short space of time since joining Gloucestershire," a club statement said.
Gloucestershire confirmed that they are "exploring the potential" to select Amir in their Championship fixtures against Kent and Lancashire when Marcus Harris will be in Sri Lanka with Australia A.
Amir was initially signed as a short-term replacement for Naseem Shah after he injured his shoulder on his debut for Gloucestershire, and the club said he would play for their second XI in the coming weeks before returning to the first team during the T20 Blast.
Amir's absence has compounded Gloucestershire's injury crisis, with Chris Dent, Ben Charlesworth (both foot) and David Payne (ankle) all unavailable this week. As a result, they have brought in three short-term loan signings: Jacob Bethell (Warwickshire, one week), Brad Wheal (Hampshire, two weeks) and Zak Chappell (Nottinghamshire, one month).
Chris Woakes remains unavailable for Warwickshire due to what the club called "a niggling knee problem" while Olly Stone is "some way off a first-team return". Ollie Pope is back in Surrey's squad after missing their win against Northamptonshire due to illness.
Stuart Broad will play for Notts at Lord's while James Anderson is back in action for Lancashire. His England team-mate Saqib Mahmood misses out, however, despite being named in a 13-man squad.