Pakistan middle-order batsman Haris Sohail has been ruled out of the ongoing South Africa tour with an injury in his right knee on Wednesday (January 2, 2019).
Sohail was included in the Pakistan squad for the three-match Test series against the Proteas side, but he had to leave the tour without having a match in the rainbow nation, having also missed out the Boxing Day Test, which was won by the hosts by 6 wickets at Centurion.
It is learned that the left-handed batsman had been carrying the injury from before traveling to South Africa, despite this, Pakistan included him in the squad, resulting he even could not bat at the practice session and could not also play the first Test of the series.
For the Boxing Day Test, Shan Masood was named Sohail's replacement just 90 minutes before the toss at Centurion as he was deemed unfit to play there. However, Masood did justice with his selection by hammering a fighting 120-ball 65 in Pakistan's second innings, but his knock could not save the match for the touring side at Centurion which ended inside three days.
Before the injury that kept him out of action in South Africa, Sohail had been in decent form with the bat during the home season, as he cracked two centuries against Australia and New Zealand and finished 2018 as Pakistan's highest run-getter in Test cricket with 550 runs at an average of 39.28. Later Babar Azam overtook him with his brilliant 71 off 79 in the first innings of the Boxing Day Test against South Africa.
While Sohail's knee injury has seen him in and out of the side, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) might announce his replacement if necessary, but it is highly unlikely that a batsman will be sent to South Africa for the only Test as second is all set to already get underway from January 3 at Cape Town.
(With Cricbuzz Inputs)