Former Pakistan captain Mohammad Hafeez has praised Babar Azam’s captaincy after the Men in Green’s victory in their T20 World Cup game against South Africa in Sydney on Thursday (November 3). He thinks that it’s easy to judge and criticize from the outside.
Hafeez further mentioned that Babar is a work in progress and the team management must give him valuable feedback to improve his decision-making during the matches.
Speaking to Sports Paktv, he said:
“00:51 - When you speak about Babar Azam’s captaincy, he hasn’t led Pakistan or [any team] in domestic cricket for too long. He got the role and I think he’s trying his level best.”
“We all make mistakes, but we need to support him in a way that the team management must talk to him if he makes mistakes. It’s easy to criticize from the outside at times, but the effort should be to rectify the mistakes.”
Babar Azam and Co. lost their first two matches against India and Zimbabwe but bounced back strongly against the Netherlands and Proteas.
Unfortunately, Pakistan’s chances of entering the T20 World Cup semifinals are on a knife edge, with India and South Africa facing lower-ranked sides Zimbabwe, and the Netherlands respectively.
Interestingly, Hafeez had criticized Babar’s captaincy after they lost their opening match against arch-rivals India in Melbourne last month.
Speaking to Rahi cricket, he had said:
"Babar Azam's captaincy is like a sacred cow that cannot be criticized. It's the third consecutive big game that we are seeing flaws in Babar's captaincy, but we keep hearing that he will learn by the time he gets to the age of 32.”
“I have my blessings for Babar, no matter how long he plays for Pakistan” – Mohammad Hafeez backs under-fire Babar Azam
Hafeez has also backed under-fire Babar for his poor form in the T20 World Cup. The latter has so far managed to score only 14 runs in four matches, including a 0 against India. The right-handed batter also struggled against the Proteas in the last game, scoring 6 runs off 15 deliveries.
The former Pakistani all-rounder said:
“Babar is a wonderful product and the whole world wants to watch it. If there are some shortcomings in his captaincy, then the teammates can help him cover up, and supporting staff can help. I have my blessings for Babar, no matter how long he plays for Pakistan. There should be no unnecessary criticism when it comes to his captaincy.”
Pakistan will play their last group-stage match of the T20 World Cup against Bangladesh in Adelaide on Sunday (November 6).