ABU DHABI: Head coach Mickey Arthur is ready to usher in what he said would be a “new era” for Pakistan cricket when his team takes on Sri Lanka in the first Test beginning from Thursday.
The upcoming Test would be the first one for Pakistan after the retirement of the legendary duo of Misbah-ul-Haq and Younis Khan, both of whom bid farewell to international cricket in the series against West Indies in May this year.
“A new era is about to begin for [Pakistan cricket] after Misbah and Younis,” Arthur told reporters during practice in Abu Dhabi on Monday.
“Sri Lanka won’t be an easy opponent,” he said, while expressing good wishes for Sarfraz Ahmed, who will be playing his first Test as captain this week.
Arthur said there were no fitness issues in the team. “Yasir has been bowling with [full rhythm] in the nets, we have no fitness problems so far.”
The coach said one or two uncapped players will be given a chance to make their debuts during the first Test.
A total of five uncapped players have been selected in the Pakistan squad for the Test series, including young pacer Mir Hamza.
Batsmen Haris Sohail and Usman Salahuddin have both played ODIs for Pakistan but are yet to make their Test debuts.
Spin-bowling all-rounder Bilal Asif and left-arm Mohammad Asghar are the other players in the squad yet to play in Tests.