ISLAMABAD: Pakistan captain Babar Azam has promised to play good and positive cricket against Zimbabwe in the three-match T20 International series which commences here at the Pindi Cricket Stadium on Saturday.
His Zimbabwean counterpart Chamu Chibhabha also expressed similar views and said his team is hoping to give tough time to the hosts in the T20s and will make their best efforts to win the series. It may be mentioned here that Zimbabwe have lost eleven T20 International matches against Pakistan.
Addressing the pre-series press conferences on Friday, Babar said Pakistan has a good pool of players and his side would try to continue the winning streak against the tourists. Pakistan wrapped up the three match ODI series 2-1 where third and last match was won by Zimbabwe in the Super Over after the scores were tied.
The Pakistan captain said that leg-spinner Shadab Khan would not be available for the first match because of his injury while best combination of senior and juniors will be played against the Zimbabwe. Babar added that in the ODI series, Pakistan gave chance to some talented, young players like Haris Rauf, Khushdil Shah and Musa Khan which was a good move by the selectors.
We were the better team in third ODI and can win the T20s: Chibhabha
However, when asked if more newcomers will be given chances in the T20s as well, he said a final decision is yet to be taken in this regard as Pakistan wants to go in with the best combination. “If newcomers like Abdullah Shafiq and others fit the combination, they would certainly be given a chance.”
Babar agreed that Pakistan could not finish well in the last ODI but the overall performance of green-shirts remained very good.
Talking about senior batting all rounder Mohammad Hafeez, he said that senior player is likely to be seen in action soon. Commenting on his personal performance in the T20s where he is likely to regain the top spot in rankings, Babar his first priority his team’s performance not of his individual.
Speaking about pacer Shaheen Shah Afridi, the skipper appreciated his performance and said that he has been part of the team for quite some time because he wants to play maximum matches to gain experience and so far, he has learnt a lot of thing because of participating in number of matches.
Meanwhile, Zimbabwean skipper Chibhabha said that his side would go with full strength to win match. He said that they never beat Pakistan during the last 22 years in Pakistan, but they did in last ODI and are hopeful of doing it in the T20s as well.
To a question, Chibhabha said: “We haven’t talked about the combinations yet. When we played our last game against Pakistan that we won, I thought we were a better team than them and it is up to us to execute that thought on the field and get the results we want,” he said.
Published in Dawn, November 7th, 2020