In a shocking and unpredictable turn of events, Pakistan’s batting legend Babar Azam has stepped down as the team’s captain after 4 years of captaincy. The former captain met with Pakistan Cricket Board Chief, Zaka Ashraf today at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore. In the meeting, the 29-year old cricketer was presented with an option to resign as the team’s captain in all the three formats. Though Babar’s quitting from Pakistan’s captaincy was already an expected move, he faced a lot of criticism for his conduct in the ongoing tournament.
Several former Pakistani cricketers advised Babar to resign from the position with the PCB also inclined towards the same decision. The Board had continuously reckoned on Babar’s poor leadership qualities during the tournament, which led to Pakistan’s dismal exit from the 2023 World Cup. Despite having faced intense criticism, former Indian players like that of Kapil Dev defended the former captain and recognised his exceptional leadership abilities in the previous championships.
A rather emotional tweet for Babar’s fans
In a heart wrenching Twitter post, Babar Azam announced his dismissal as Pakistan’s captain in all formats that made fans emotional and sympathise with the 29-year old cricketer. In the Twitter post, Babar stated:
“I widely remember the moment when I received the call from PCB to lead Pakistan in 2019. Over the past four years, I have experienced many highs and lows on and off the field, but I wholeheartedly and passionately aimed to maintain Pakistan’s pride and respect in the cricket world. Reaching the number 1 spot in the white ball format was a result of the collective efforts of the players, coaches, and management but I’d like to express my gratitude to passionate Pakistan cricket fans for their unwavering support during this journey.”
Will continue to represent Pakistan as a player: Babar Azam
Babar further reckoned that he will continue to represent his country in all the three formats, though as a player. “Today, I am stepping down as the captain of Pakistan in all formats. It’s a difficult decision but I feel it is the right time for this call. I am here to support the new captain and the team with my experience and dedication. I want to express my sincere thanks to the Pakistan Cricket Board for entrusting me with this significant responsibility”, he further added on his Twitter post.
The startling announcement made by Babar came as a shock to a million of fans, as he is one of the best captains in the history of Pakistan’s Captainship. The likes of either Shaheen Shah Afridi or Mohammad Rizwan are likely to replace Babar Azam as the team’s captain, confirmed reports.