Leicestershire leg-spinning all-rounder Rehan Ahmed has been officially added to England men’s Test squad for the tour of Pakistan.
The 18-year-old, who has been with the Lions in their red-ball training camp in the UAE and is currently playing in the three-day warm-up fixture against the England Test squad in Abu Dhabi, has impressed coaches with his attitude and genuine potential to be given his first call-up to the senior side.
If selected during the three-match Test series, the first time England are playing in Pakistan in 17 years, he will become the youngest player to play Test cricket for England men, surpassing Yorkshire’s Brian Close, who represented the three lions at 18 years 149 days against New Zealand in July 1949.
Ahmed will join Jack Leach, Liam Livingston, Will Jacks and Joe Root as England spin options in Pakistan.
Head coach Brendon McCullum described the teenager as someone who has “raw potential”.
“Ben (Stokes), myself and the rest of the coaches like how he approaches his game. The experience of being part of the squad in Pakistan will be hugely beneficial for him, and he will add to the make-up of our squad,” he said.
Ahmed made County Championship debut for Leicestershire in May and stands on the brink of full Test honours having bowled only 446 balls in first-class cricket, with nine wickets.
In 13 ODI matches with England’s U19 side, Ahmed has taken 24 wickets, with an economy of 3.87.
He first gained attention at the age of 11, when he dismissed Ben Stokes and Sir Alastair Cook in the nets, having been invited to bowl with the England team.
The Southern Brave picked Ahmed up in The Hundred over the summer, and he has been invited to train with England’s white-ball side at Old Trafford, benefitting from a session with fellow leg-spinner Adil Rashid.
Ahmed had just finished playing for England Lions against the full England side on the opening day of a Test warm-up match in Abu Dhabi when the news was announced.
He bowled eight overs in Abu Dhabi, conceding 73 runs. England fly to Pakistan after their Test camp at the Abu Dhabi Cricket and Sports Hub.
Watch England’s three-Test series in Pakistan live on Sky Sports Cricket. Coverage of the opening game begins at 4.30am on Thursday, December 1 ahead of a 5am start in Rawalpindi.
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