KARACHI: Pakistan’s fast skipper Babar Azam hopes that his incredible run-scoring may help the country win the World Cup and, in the process, realise a childhood vision.
The 27-year-old is in top form in all three formats of international cricket, and he made history last week by being the first batter in ODI history to hit three straight hundreds on two separate occasions.
However, Babar told AFP that his prolific streak will be meaningless if he does not win the T20 World Cup in Australia in October and the 50-over World Cup in India next year.
In emailed comments, top-order batsman Babar, who is ranked number one in the world in both ODIs and T20 Internationals, stated, “No doubt I am enjoying my form.”
“However, with this form, my main ambition is to help Pakistan win two World Cups in the next one-and-a-half years, and if that occurs, I’ll consider my runs to be worth gold.” In 2010 and 2012, the guy dubbed “King” played in two junior World Cups, scoring the most runs for his country on both occasions, however Pakistan failed to win the tournaments.
At the 2019 ODI World Cup, right-handed Babar scored a match-winning century against eventual runners-up New Zealand, although Pakistan were unable to advance to the semi-finals.
Despite Babar’s batsmanship, they lost to eventual champions Australia in the T20 World Cup semi-finals in the UAE last year.
His father, Azam Siddique, has always been his biggest supporter and huge fan.
“When I was a kid, I was obsessed about cricket, and when my father saw that, he supported me,” Babar said.
Babar’s path to the top included working as a ball boy during a Pakistan-South Africa Test in Lahore in 2007, where he met his idol A.B. de Villiers up close for the first time.
“I used to follow A.B. de Villiers when I was a kid,” Babar said of the South African legend, who is regarded as one of the best batters in modern cricket.
“I enjoyed how he used to play the ball up the field.” It was enjoyable for me, so I developed it, and it now helps me atone.
Babar credits his achievement to a lot of planning and faith.
“International cricket is so difficult these days, and the players are so skillful, that if you don’t prepare properly, you won’t be able to compete.”
“First and foremost, you must believe in yourself, and with that mindset, I enter the batter’s box and bat with a positive and aggressive intent.”
“I want to dominate my opponents at all times, and it pays off.”
“When you score runs, not only does the rest of the world notice and fans become enthralled, but it also pushes the entire squad to want to contribute.”
Babar took over as all-format skipper in 2019, but rather than putting pressure on himself, he prefers to lead by example.