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England and Pakistan use T20I series to measure World Cup readiness | Cricket News

KARACHI: England kick off their first tour of Pakistan in 17 years on Tuesday with the first of a seven-match Twenty20 series, which will become even more important for both sides ahead of the World Cup in Australia next month.
England was originally scheduled to tour Pakistan last year, but it fell through due to security concerns. Jos Buttler’s men were only given the green light to tour this year after a security team assessed the situation on site.
England will play four games in Karachi and three in Lahore before returning in December to play three tests in the second leg of the tour.
With Buttler set to miss the Karachi leg while recovering from a knee injury, the squad will be led by Moeen Ali, whose grandfather came to England from Pakistan after World War II.
“It will be memorable to play in front of the Pakistani crowd and it is also a huge honor to replace Jos Buttler, as he recovers from injury, and captain of England,” Moeen wrote in his column for the Daily Mail.
“Obviously this tour is important for cricket and it’s crucial for us as a side as well.
“Seven T20s will be a tough test under these conditions and a good indicator of where we stand, ahead of the World Cup in Australia next month,” added the all-rounder.
England last toured Pakistan in 2005, but at least 10 members of the current squad have some experience of the local conditions thanks to their matches in the Pakistan Super League (PSL).
One of them, Alex Hales, will especially want to impress after his three-year absence from international cricket due to an off-field problem.
Meanwhile, Pakistan will try to shake off the disappointment of Sri Lanka’s loss in the Asian Cup final earlier this month.
skipper Babar AzamThe decline in form and their overall batting approach in 20-overs cricket have been key talking points and Pakistan will try to iron out the kinks over the course of the series.
England kick off their Twenty20 World Cup campaign against Afghanistan in Perth on October 22, a day before Pakistan’s opener against arch-rival India in Melbourne.

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