ICC ODI World Cup 2023: It Was Babar Azam’s Wish That Shadab Khan Remains The Vice-captain During The World Cup – Zaka Ashraf
Sep 23, 2023 at 3:11 PM
Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Zaka Ashraf revealed that Pakistan skipper Babar Azam has backed the selection of Pakistan vice-captain for the ODI World Cup in India despite Shadab Khan’s lacklustre performance at the 2023 Asia Cup in Sri Lanka.
During a special meeting at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Lahore, Zaka Ashraf headed the meeting. The meeting was attended by Babar Azam, the captain of Pakistan, head coach Grant Bradburn, Team director Mickey Arthur, vice-captain Shadab Khan, and technical committee members Misbah-ul-Haq and Mohammad Hafeez as they thoroughly analyzed the performance of Pakistan in the continental event.
Speaking to the media, Zaka Ashraf disclosed the wish of Babar Azam to have Shadab Khan as his deputy heading into the ODI World Cup in India and reckons that it was important for everyone to review the performance of Pakistan in the Asia Cup for the benefit of the team.
“It was Babar’s wish that Shadab remains the vice-captain during the World Cup, However, if he doesn’t perform, he will be dropped.”
“It was important to review the Asia Cup performance, Mohammad Hafeez and Misbah-ul-Haq have been advising me on essential matters,” Zaka Ashraf added.
It was reported that the performances of Shadab Khan and out-of-sorts opener Fakhar Zaman received a lot of attention in the meeting. Pakistan skipper Babar Azam showed his support for the two out-of-form players and sounded confident that they would perform better in the forthcoming ODI World Cup in India.
Babar Azam And Inzamam-ul-Haq Didn’t Want To Change The Squad – Zaka Ashraf
Zaka Ashraf revealed that Misbah-ul-Haq and Mohammad Hafeez wanted to make a few changes in the team heading into the ODI World Cup, whereas, the skipper Babar Azam and chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq wanted to have the same team for the marquee event in India.
“Both Misbah and Hafeez wanted big changes in the squad because of the team’s Asia Cup performance while our captain, Babar Azam, and the chief selector, Inzamam-ul-Haq, didn’t want to change the squad.”
“We went with the advice of Babar Azam and Inzamam-ul-Haq in the wider interest of the World Cup and the Pakistan cricket team,” Zaka Ashraf added.
Pakistan have not won the World Cup since clinching their maiden title way back in 1992. Since then, they have made it to the final just once in 1999, and are still looking to win their second World Cup title.
Meanwhile, the Men in Green will fancy their chances of coming into the marquee event in India, as they have enough resources in the team to win the championship in India.