Azhar Ali's performance under scrutiny
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) is considering Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan as possible replacements for Azhar Ali for the role of Test captain.
The cricket board, according to a report by ESPNcricinfo, mentioned that Azhar’s performance as team captain in the longest format is under scrutiny. The 35-year-old recently met with PCB Chief Executive Officer Wasim Khan in this regard.
The final decision to retain or axe Azhar as the frontman rests with PCB Chairman Ehsan Mani who is also expected to meet the right-handed batsman in the coming 10 days.
The 35-year-old has come under much criticism for his performance and leadership skills. His centuries against Sri Lanka and England proved to be a saving grace.
Former captain and legendary fast-bowler Wasim Akram, who is a member of the PCB Cricket Committee, had said that Azhar’s leadership skills is huring the side as a whole.
“It will hurt the Pakistan team and the cricket lovers in Pakistan,” Akram said on Sky Sports. “Winning and losing is part of cricket, but I think our captain missed a trick quite a few times in this game, as far as his leadership is concerned.”
Babar Azam, who took over the reins of the ODI and T20I team from Safaraz Ahmed, led Pakistan to a series defeat against Australia but led his team to victory against Bangladesh.
The side’s three-match series against England ended in a draw.
The wicketkeeper-batsman, who has now become the first choice as the team’s wicketkeeper, has a strong case to be appointed team captain in the five-day format. He was named player of the series against England.
He also led Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to a title triumph in the recently concluded National T20 Cup.