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Azhar Mahmood Appointed Head Coach for Pakistan’s T20I Series Against New Zealand

Former Test cricketer Azhar Mahmood has been named the head coach of the Pakistan cricket team for the upcoming T20I series against New Zealand, set to kick off on April 18. Mahmood, who previously served as the bowling coach of the Pakistan team, brings a wealth of experience to his new role, having also clinched the Pakistan Super League (PSL) 9 crown with Islamabad United.

Azhar Mahmood Appointed Head Coach for Pakistan's T20I Series Against New Zealand

Joining Mahmood in the coaching staff are former fast bowler Wahab Riaz, who will act as the senior team manager, and Mansoor Rana, who will serve as the team manager. Test match legend Mohammad Yousuf will take charge as the batting coach, while Saeed Ajmal will oversee spin bowling duties.

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) will announce the squad for the series against New Zealand on Tuesday, April 9, in Lahore. The five-match series is scheduled to be played from April 18 to 27, with matches set to take place in Rawalpindi and Lahore.

Meanwhile, the New Zealand cricket team is expected to arrive in Pakistan on April 14 with their recently announced depleted squad. The series marks an important opportunity for both teams to test their skills ahead of future tournaments.

In a significant development, the PCB recently decided to change the national team’s white-ball captaincy from Shaheen Shah Afridi to Babar Azam ahead of the 2024 ICC T20 World Cup. This decision follows Pakistan’s failure to advance to the Semi-Finals of the 2023 ICC ODI World Cup in India.

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Shaheen Shah Afridi’s tenure as captain lasted for just one series, during which Pakistan suffered a defeat against New Zealand in their home series, losing 4-1 in a five-match T20I series. The change in leadership reflects the PCB’s commitment to revitalizing the team’s performance and achieving success in future tournaments.

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