Babar Azam to remain captain for a long time: Wasim Khan

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ISLAMABAD, Dec 01 (APP): Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), Wasim Khan has said that Babar Azam will hold the post of national team’s captaincy for a long time.

“I can assure you that until Ehsan Mani [PCB chairman] and myself are in the Pakistan board, Babar will remain the captain,” Wasim said in an interview with YouTube channel ‘Cricket Baaz’.

Babar was handed over the reins of team’s stewardship in both limited overs formats last year, with his first assignment in T20Is coming against Australia in November 2019, while the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Super League series against Zimbabwe in November was his first challenge as ODI captain.

Wasim Khan revealed that Babar himself wanted the Test captaincy and was given the same after having a discussion with the PCB chief. “Babar himself showed keen interest in becoming Test captain and assured us he could handle the pressures and it would not affect his batting.

“We felt he [Babar Azam] is our best choice because he has a good future, he’s our best batsman and getting better every day. And we’ve found him to be mentally very strong when we first tested him as captain in the white-ball formats.

“That’s why when the time came we felt that Azhar Ali had done his best but now was the time to start grooming Babar and make him Test captain as well,” Wasim reckoned.

The 26-year-old Babar led the Karachi Kings to victory in the recently-concluded Pakistan Super League 2020. He scored a match-winning unbeaten 63 off 49 balls in the final against Lahore Qalandars. He also earned the man-of-the-series award as he ended the season with 473 runs at an impressive average of 59.12 in 11 matches.

Babar’s tenure as Pakistan’s captain in the longest format begins against New Zealand in December and January wherein Pakistan are to play three T20Is and two Tests. The national players are currently observing quarantine in New Zealand.