January 22, 2017

To take part in the U19 Asia Cup are the Pakistan squad, made up of 21 squad members, which includes six officials. The team journeyed from Karachi to Colombo on Tuesday.

The squad is led by Nasir Nawaz, and includes some of the most promkising youngsters of the country, in the revamped national team that was selected, based on the premise that the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) ruling allowed only players eligible to play in the World Cup, to participate in the Asian Cup.

In Pool B sits Pakistan alongside Bangladesh, Afghanistan, and Singapore. Their opening match would be played on Thursday at the Galle International Stadium against Singapore. Their next ties will see them go head-on with Afghanistan on Friday whilst they would go face to face on Sunday with Bangladesh.

The semi-finals, two, will be played on December 20 and 21, with the final scheduled to hold on the 23rd of December.

There are a total of eight teams competing in the tournament, including India, Pakistan’s arch-rival and Sri Lanka, the hosts.

Mansoor Rana, the head coach of the Pakistan squad believes that his side possesses the strength and depth needed to win the tournament.

“At the U19 level it becomes quite a challenge to prepare, especially when you are not sure about the opposition’s strength and weaknesses.

“However, I feel that we have a good enough team that can win the tournament. In the longer run, our focus would be on preparing adequately for the 2018 World Cup and giving our players maximum exposure in Sri Lanka,” he said.

Abdur Rehman, Rana’s assistant and coach of Peshawar, echoed the sentiments of his head coach and went on to reveal how hard the players have been working, in a bid to improve their game.