Azam, Imam ruled out of first Test vs NZ

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Pakistan's all-format captain Babar Azam and opening batsman Imam-ul-Haq have been ruled out of the first Test against New Zealand with thumb injuries.

Both batsmen fractured their thumbs during training session last week and have yet to return.

Wicketkeeper batsman Mohammad Rizwan will lead the side in the first Test, starting at Mount Maunganui from Saturday.

Pakistan named uncapped 24-year-old batsman Imran Butt in its 15-member squad for the first Test.

Butt scored 934 runs in the 2019-20 first -lass tournament at an average of 62 with four centuries and three half-centuries.

"It will be nearly two weeks to Babar's injury when the first Test starts, (but) it will be hard on him and the team to play him without any net sessions," Pakistan head coach Misbah-ul-Haq said.

PAKISTAN SQUAD FOR FIRST TEST V NEW ZEALAND

Mohammad Rizwan (captain), Abid Ali, Azhar Ali, Faheem Ashraf, Fawad Alam, Haris Sohail, Imran Butt, Mohammad Abbas, Naseem Shah, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Shadab Khan, Shaheen Afridi, Shan Masood, Sohail Khan and Yasir Shah.