Pakistan skipper Babar Azam has been one of the most consistent batsmen in modern-day cricket. He is Pakistan’s mainstay in batting and has performed exceptionally well, especially in crunch situations.
However, there has been a debate concerning Babar’s strike rate and dot ball percentage in the recent past. The Lahore-born has a strike rate of 130.65 in the shortest format, which isn’t bad but not dominating as well, considering the caliber and stature of Babar in international cricket.
Several experts have expressed their concern for Babar as he hasn’t been able to increase his strike rate. Many have even raised doubts over Babar’s opening alongside Mohammad Rizwan because his poor strike rate proved costly for the team, especially in the powerplay.
Despite the criticism, Babar is of the opinion that he is comfortable as an opener and has done well at that position. The 26-year-old heaped praises on Rizwan, stating the combination has produced results for Pakistan as they understand each other really well.
“I became No. 1 in the world as an opener, so I’m comfortable there. That’s where I performed so well, so I’m very comfortable opening. The year’s not done yet, and he (Rizwan) has already scored the most ever T20I runs in a calendar year. What more do you need, really? “ said Babar as quoted by ESPNcricinfo.
“There’s no better combination. We always want to start well to set the tone for the guys coming after us. That’s our mindset, and in the year we’ve been opening, we have come to understand each other’s games,” he added.
Babar said his partnership with Rizwan has done wonders for Pakistan as when one batter struggle, the other takes the responsibility to excel the run rate.
“We communicate well, and if he’s struggling to tee off, I go after the bowlers, and if I’m struggling, he does. We’ve built on that very well, and you’ll have noticed when we bat together we have built big partnerships,” Babar added further.