The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has announced a significant change in leadership for the Pakistan T20I team as they gear up for the upcoming series against New Zealand. Mohammad Rizwan, the talented keeper-batter, has been appointed as the new vice-captain, replacing Shadab Khan. This move comes as part of the PCB's efforts to revamp the team's leadership group and backroom staff following their disappointing performance in the 2023 World Cup.
A New Captaincy Structure
In the aftermath of their unsuccessful World Cup campaign, the PCB made bold decisions to shake up the captaincy across all formats. Babar Azam, who had been leading the team, stepped down from his role, making way for new captains. Shan Masood was appointed as the Test skipper, while Shaheen Afridi took over the reins as the T20I captain. However, the board is yet to announce an ODI captain.
Mohammad Rizwan: A Rising Star
One of the standout performers in the Pakistan T20I team, Mohammad Rizwan's elevation to the vice-captaincy comes as no surprise. Rizwan has consistently showcased his skills as a keeper-batter and has been a vital asset to the team. With an impressive average of close to 50 in T20Is, Rizwan has played 85 matches, registering one century and 25 fifties.
Acknowledging the Promotion
Expressing his gratitude, Rizwan shared his excitement about the new role and thanked the PCB for entrusting him with the responsibility. He emphasized his commitment to working closely with the captain, coaching staff, and teammates to contribute to the team's success. Rizwan's leadership experience as the captain of the Multan Sultans in the Pakistan Super League (PSL) adds an extra dimension to his role as vice-captain.
"It is an honor to be named the vice-captain of Pakistan Men's T20I side. I am thankful to the PCB for entrusting me with this responsibility. I am looking forward to working closely with the captain, coaching staff, and my teammates to contribute to the team's success." - Mohammad Rizwan
A Glance at Rizwan's Remarkable Journey
Rizwan's journey to becoming one of Pakistan's most reliable players in the shortest format of the game has been nothing short of remarkable. With over 238 T20 matches under his belt, Rizwan has shown exceptional consistency and leadership qualities. Since being appointed as the captain of the Multan Sultans in 2021, he has led the team to the finals on all three occasions, ultimately clinching the title in 2021.
Pakistan's Squad for New Zealand T20Is
The Pakistan T20I squad for the upcoming series against New Zealand boasts a formidable lineup. Led by Shaheen Shah Afridi as the captain, the team includes Mohammad Rizwan as the vice-captain and wicketkeeper. Other notable players in the squad include Babar Azam, Fakhar Zaman, and Haris Rauf. The squad also features promising young talents like Abbas Afridi and Aamir Jamal.
The New Zealand vs. Pakistan 2024 Schedule
The series between New Zealand and Pakistan is set to commence on January 12th, 2024, with the first T20I taking place in Auckland. Here is the complete schedule for the series:
1st T20I - January 12, Auckland
2nd T20I - January 14, Hamilton
3rd T20I - January 17, Dunedin
4th T20I - January 19, Christchurch
5th T20I - January 21, Christchurch
With Mohammad Rizwan appointed as the vice-captain of the Pakistan T20I team, a new era begins for the side. Rizwan's wealth of experience, impressive batting average, and leadership qualities make him an ideal choice for the role. Alongside captain Shaheen Afridi, Rizwan will play a crucial role in guiding the team towards success in the upcoming series against New Zealand. The PCB's strategic changes in leadership reflect their commitment to revitalizing the team's performance and achieving greater heights in T20Is.