Legendary cricketer Shoaib Akhtar has named one batter from the current Pakistan team that, according to him, could fetch millions at the auctions of the Indian Premier League (IPL).
The fifteenth edition of the cash-rich league started last week (on March 26), with players from all major countries taking part in the tournament apart from Pakistan cricketers. Notably, Pakistani players have only featured in the inaugural season of IPL 2008 as the ties between the two nations worsened due to the terror attacks, and the Pakistani cricketers have been banned from IPL since then.
However, when Akhtar was asked about the future prospects of any Pakistani playing the IPL in the coming years, he went straight with Pakistan skipper Babar Azam. Akhtar reckoned Babar might trigger the bidding war and end up getting INR 15 to 20 crores. The former Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) player also wished to see Babar opening the innings alongside global superstar Virat Kohli.
“It would be great to see Babar Azam and Virat Kohli opening the innings together in the IPL one day. What an exciting moment that would be. In the auction, Babar would go for 15-20 crore INR and could be the most expensive Pakistan player,” Akhtar said while speaking to Sportskeeda.
Babar has a tremendous record in the shortest format. The 27-year-old has played as many as 73 T20I matches in which he has amassed 2620 runs at a remarkable average of 45.17. More importantly, Babar plays with a strike rate of almost 130 and has smashed 25 half-centuries and one hundred in the shortest format.
When it comes to Pakistan Super League (PSL), Babar is the all-time leading run-getter with 2413 runs to his name in 68 matches. The right-handed batter has slammed 23 half-centuries in Pakistan’s prestigious domestic T20 tournament.