Johannesburg, Dec 4: In a noble gesture to the memory of Phillip Hughes, who passed away last week, Pakistan and New Zealand have paid their tributes to late Australian batsman by dedicating the trophy for their Twenty20 matches in Dubai.
Hughes succumbed to an injury he endured from a bouncer that hit him during a Sheffield Shield match at the SCG.
Hughes’ funeral was held on Wednesday, as Pakistan and New Zealand prepared for the shortest format of the game drawing a preceding Test series 1-1, Sport24 reported.
Pakistan’s Twenty20 captain Shahid Afridi reportedly said that Hughes’ tragic death has left the cricketing world in a shock.
“Hughes died very young and his tragic death has left everyone shocked,” said Afridi, adding that they are thankful to the sponsors who have decided to dedicate the trophy in memory of the late Australian batsman as a mark of respect.
Pakistan had a miserable World Twenty20 in Bangladesh where they failed to reach the last four for the first time in five editions of the tournament, which prompted captain Mohammad Hafeez to step down, giving the responsibility to all-rounder Afridi for a second stint.
Afridi said that Pakistan would not underestimate New Zealand who are without their dashing skipper Brendon McCullum who, along with pacemen Tim Southee and Trent Boult, have returned to New Zealand to prepare for the upcoming home series against Sri Lanka.
McCullum smashed a brilliant 202 to help New Zealand win the third and final Test in Sharjah on Sunday in the series-levelling win.
Pakistan T20 squad: Shahid Afridi (captain), Ahmed Shehzad, Mohammad Hafeez, Awais Zia, Anwar Ali, Haris Sohail, Mohammad Irfan, Raza Hasan, Saad Nasim, Sarfraz Ahmed, Sohail Tanvir, Umar Akmal, Umar Gul, Wahab Riaz.
New Zealand T20 squad: Kane Williamson (captain), Corey Anderson, Dean Brownlie, Anton Devcich, Martin Guptill, Matt Henry, Tom Latham, Mitchell McClenaghan, Nathan McCullum, Kyle Mills, Adam Milne, James Neesham, Luke Ronchi, Ross Taylor, Daniel Vettori.
(With Agency Inputs)