World Cup 2023: Is Pakistan looking at another injury scare ahead of England match?

Pakistan´s Haris Rauf reacts during the World Cup 2023 match between Pakistan and South Africa at the M A Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai on October 27, 2023. — AFP

KOLKATA: Green Shirts’right-arm pace Haris Rauf is experiencing a sprain in his ribs giving the national side a major injury scare ahead of their match against England, sources told Geo News on Monday.

The development comes as the 30-year-old left the field during New Zealand’s innings after conceding 85 runs in 10 overs.

Rauf has undergone an MRI test after complaining of feeling a sprain in his ribs, sources added.

Meanwhile, the team management has also confirmed the pacer’s test terming it as a “routine” medical procedure.

Rauf’s injury scare comes as Shadab Khan, the team’s Vice-Captain, suffered a concussion in a South Africa match on October 27.

The leg-spinner since then has not played another match and didn’t feature in the New Zealand match on November 4 last week as well.

It is pertinent to mention that Pakistan’s chances of qualifying for the World Cup semi-final still remain difficult as their destiny isn’t entirely in their hands.

The Men in Green will face off against England in a must-win match on November 11 in Kolkata but their destiny — for progression into the semis — will likely be decided before that as the two teams Babar-led side is dependent on, Afghanistan and New Zealand, will have played their remaining matches by then.

Firstly, Afghanistan have to play two more matches in the World Cup which, by any means, are not easy as they will be against the in-form teams of Australia and South Africa on November 7 and November 10, respectively.

If Afghanistan win both matches, they will qualify directly with 12 points, above New Zealand and Pakistan.

However, Pakistan’s direct contention is with New Zealand right now as both teams have to play one more match but the Black Caps have the upper hand on net run rate (NRR), they play the struggling Sri Lanka side on November 9 in Bengaluru.

New Zealand is currently ranked fourth with 0.398 NRR while Pakistan is fifth with 0.036 NRR.

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