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Young Pakistan star says he wants people to call him Babar Azam and not Virat Kohli, reveals admiration for the former

  • Haider Ali is one of the most promising cricketers in Pakistan at the moment.
  • The 19-year-old admires Babar Azam and hopes people will one day speak of him in the same vein.
Sai Teja
Modified 23 Mar 2020, 19:55 IST

Pakistan batsman Babar Azam
Pakistan batsman Babar Azam

After establishing himself as one of the brightest prospects in Pakistan, young Haider Ali revealed his admiration for his countryman Babar Azam. The 19-year-old is a gifted batsman who has been compared to the likes of the explosive Pakistani batsman and the Indian skipper.

Ali, speaking in a video on YouTube was quoted by Cricket Pakistan saying,

“A batsman can never become like his role models, but can improve himself and develop shots like they play. I want to improve myself to the extent that people call me Babar Azam and not (Virat) Kohli because Babar has good shots.”

The right-hander who impressed heavily in the ICC Under-19 World Cup also went on to talk about how he could learn from Virat Kohli as well.

The 19-year-old continued,

“I cannot become Kohli but can develop shots like him through practice. I’m Haider Ali so I can only become Haider Ali.”

Ali also shed light on his relationship with his compatriot and the role that Babar Azam has had on his career so far. He said,

“I met Babar Azam during the first-class tournament and he gave me tips regarding my batting. We also get to learn a lot from him in the National Cricket Academy in Lahore. He also supported me during PSL by boosting my confidence and advising me to keep scoring runs and leave the rest to Allah Almighty.”

This comes days after former Pakistan international Rameez Raja heaped praise on the young batsman. The 57-year-old opined on where young Ali could fit into the team in the future and highlighted the nature of the role that should be given to a batsman of his calibre and style of play.


On his YouTube channel, Rameez Raja was quoted saying,

“Haider (Ali) also has to work on his consistency like Virat (Kohli) and Babar (Azam) and try to be consistent. He is a batsman who should bat at the number 3 position and few dot balls should not worry him, he should have faith in his capability that he can cover up for the dot balls later and win matches for the team just like Virat Kohli and Babar Azam.”

Published 23 Mar 2020, 19:54 IST
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