The UAE has played host to Pakistan's home games since 2009. Although teams have started touring Pakistan in recent years, the UAE has hosted most of their games in the last decade or so. Pakistan are quite familiar with the conditions in the UAE.
They had an impeccable record in the shortest format of the game under Mickey Arthur, claiming the top spot in the rankings. Speaking to ESPN Cricinfo about his team's campaign in the 2021 T20 World Cup, Babar Azam sounded upbeat about Pakistan's chances, saying:
"Our record there is excellent, it's the place where we became world No. 1. The performances we produced, both as a team and individually, show the conditions really suited us. Our record and consistency there is proof of that. These days we understand teams are playing more positive cricket, and we need to continue to do that, too."
Pakistan head into the T20 World Cup off a 1-0 series win over West Indies and a 2-1 series defeat against England. They had series against England and New Zealand scheduled ahead of the T20 World Cup, but the tours never came to fruition.
"We're struggling in two areas, middle order and death bowling" - Babar Azam
Babar Azam outlined the shortcomings in the Pakistan team looking to win their second T20 World Cup. The captain rued that the players have been unable to remain consistent for a significant period of time. That has resulted in players getting dropped, leading to more experimentation and newer combinations. Azam said:
"We're struggling in two areas, middle order and death bowling, and have done for some time. We've tried different combinations and tried to assess who could suit the team if they played in certain positions. It didn't work out, unfortunately, but that's cricket. "
Babar Azam continued in this regard:
"If you select players, you cannot guarantee that they will perform. There are ups and downs, and the players we selected were chosen because they had performed elsewhere. You need to take your chances if you want to stay in the Pakistan team. You will have to perform consistently, otherwise you get demoted to the bench."
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Pakistan made some late changes to their final squad for the 2021 T20 World Cup. Haider Ali, Fakhar Zaman, Sarfaraz Ahmed and Shoaib Malik were included in the squad for the mega tournament which begins in a few days.