Pakistan’s captain, Babar Azam, expressed his frustration and disappointment following their defeat to Sri Lanka in the Asia Cup, which resulted in their elimination from the tournament. The loss meant Pakistan could not secure a spot in the final of the competition, and they finished at the bottom of the Super Four table.
Reports suggest that Babar Azam was visibly upset in the dressing room after the match and openly criticized the team’s performance. This outburst did not sit well with ace pacer Shaheen Shah Afridi, who interrupted to suggest that the skipper should also acknowledge the players who had performed well.
However, Babar’s reaction was reportedly not positive, and it took the intervention of Mohammad Rizwan to resolve the issue. This incident is crucial for Pakistan, especially with the upcoming ODI World Cup on the horizon. In recent years, there have been videos of Babar Azam motivating and encouraging his teammates, emphasizing the importance of not blaming each other for losses.
Pakistan heated dressing room argument (Bolnews):
– Babar told players they’re not playing responsibly.
– Shaheen said ‘at least appreciate who bowled and batted well’.
– Babar didn’t like interruption and said ‘I know who’s performing well’.
– Rizwan came to stop argument. pic.twitter.com/CMsoHloQH8
— Mufaddal Vohra (@mufaddal_vohra) September 16, 2023
However, this time, the defeat against the defending champions seemed to have shaken the captain’s composure. Adding to Pakistan’s challenges, their ace pacer Naseem Shah is currently dealing with a shoulder injury, which is likely to keep him out of the upcoming ODI World Cup scheduled to begin on October 5.
Naseem sustained the injury during the Asia Cup and was unable to participate in the match against Sri Lanka. While fellow pacer Haris Rauf is also nursing an injury, he is expected to recover in time for the mega tournament in India.
In the event that Naseem Shah is unable to participate, either Mohammad Wasim Jr. or Zaman Khan is likely to be considered as a replacement in the 15-member squad. Pakistan will need to address these issues and find the right balance as they prepare for the ODI World Cup.