Haris Rauf's Side Strain and Recovery

Another concern for Pakistan is the side strain that has afflicted Haris Rauf. While this injury has raised eyebrows, there is optimism within the team that Rauf will recuperate before the World Cup commences. 

Despite being sidelined during the Asia Cup, Pakistan did not officially rule him out of the tournament or announce his replacement, Shahnawaz Dahani, into the squad.

Babar Azam provided a glimmer of hope regarding Haris Rauf's condition, highlighting that Rauf's recovery is underway, “Haris Rauf is not bad. He's just got a little bit of a side strain, but he's recovering before the World Cup,”.

Rauf's ability to generate pace and seam movement makes him a vital asset for Pakistan's fast-bowling attack, and his availability would be a significant boost to their World Cup prospects.

The clock is ticking for Pakistan, as teams have until September 28 to submit their final squads to the ICC for the upcoming World Cup. After this deadline, any changes to the 15-player squads require permission from the event organizers.

Pakistan's hopes of a successful World Cup campaign hinge on the swift recovery of Naseem Shah and Haris Rauf. While Azam remains cautiously optimistic about their availability, the team's preparations and plans for alternative scenarios are closely guarded secrets.