KARACHI: Pakistan team will return to Test cricket after 14 years when it will meet Sri Lanka today here at the National Stadium.
Dashing batsman Younis Khan will be leading the team after he replaced Shoaib Malik as Pakistan Captain last month.
There may be some pressure on the Pakistan batting since they have last played Test match against India at Bangalore in December 2007 and there is a theory that hosts could be rusty.
However most of Pakistan member were involved on the domestic first class cricket and they must be looking to show their potential after disappointment in the ODI series.
It will be big test of the nerves of Younis and his team since Lankan posses the services of world class spin attack spearheaded by off-spinning wizard Muttiah Muralitharan and mystery spinner Ajantha Mendis with pace quartet of of veteran Chaminda Vaas, Dilhara Fernando, Thilan Tushara and Farveez Maharoof.
This kind of Sri Lankan attack creates a lot of headache for Pakistan curator. But as expected pitch is likely to favor batting and help the spinners at the later stage.
For Pakistan Khurram Manzoor will be making his test debut and will open the innings with left handed batsman Salman Butt.
Younis Khan confirmed the 12 member squad and said Asim Kamal, Fawad Alam and Ahmed Shehzad will be reserve which means Faisal Iqbal won the available the middle order spot.
Pakistan would be entering the test match with four specialist bowlers including pace trio of Umer Gul, Yasir Arafat and Sohail Khan with leg-spinner Danish Kaneria.
Younis will leading the team for the fifth time in test match but for the first as regular captain.
This not a very happy hunting ground for the visiting team as they have lost all the four previous test matches on this ground.
Salman Butt, Khurram Manzoor, Younis Khan (Captain), Shoaib Malik, Misbah-ul-Haq, Faisal Iqbal, Kamran Akmal (wicketkeeper) Yasir Arafat, Umar Gul, Danish Kaneria, Muhammad Talha, Sohail Khan.
Malinda Warnapura, Tharanga Paranavitana, Kumar Sangakkara, Mahela Jayawardene (Captain) Thilan Samaraweera, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Prasanna Jayawardene, Chaminda Vaas, Muttiah Muralitharan, Ajantha Mendis, Chamara Kapugedera, Farveez Maharoof, Dilhara Fernando, Thilan Thushara, Suranga Lakmal.