“I Don’t Care How…”: Shoaib Akhtar Indirectly Takes A Dig At Babar Azam
Former Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar recently came under fire after criticizing captain Babar Azam over his lack of communication skills. He said that Babar could never become a “brand” in Pakistan because he could not speak proper English in front of the media. Shoaib received a lot of backlash from fans and some former players for his statement as he insisted that a player should be judged only on the basis of his cricketing skills and not on the basis of his language. Akhtar once again took an indirect dig at Babar after wicketkeeper-batsman Azam Khan played a match-winning innings for Islamabad United in a match against the Karachi Kings in the ongoing eighth edition of the Pakistan Super League.
Chasing 202 against Karachi, Azam Khan scored an unbeaten 72 off 41 balls as United registered a six-wicket win in their last PSL match. After the match, Shoaib praised Azam for his knock on Suno News and said, “I found Azam Khan to be a responsible person, who can not only build slogs but also build innings.” Talked to him, and it’s nice to hear him speak like this while talking about his performances. When I was playing 20 years ago, I didn’t care how I spoke. But in today’s era, media being is a part of your job. I can only hint and pin- point to you, ‘This is a problem, please go and fix it. It is for your own benefit’. The way he (Azam) Used to speak, looked like captaincy material to him.
Akhtar further took a dig at Babar’s ‘ICC Player of the Year’ award, which he won earlier this year, and said, “When Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis, Shahid Afridi and Abdul Razzaq used to play, they used to say , ‘The whole ground and the crowd is mine. I control the atmosphere of the place.’ … The crowd backed him, he took ownership of him. He was like, ‘I’m here to run the show.’
Earlier, Akhtar had also backed spinner Shahab Khan to replace Babar Azam as the captain of the national side in future.
“Shadab is a very smart kid when it comes to cricketing skills. He wants to improve, which is a great thing. He is ready to accept his mistakes and rectify them. In the last two years, he has worked on his bowling. Worked hard.” And his fitness has also improved. He wants to look good and speak well. In times to come, he is not a bad option to captain Pakistan in white-ball cricket,” Akhtar was quoted as saying by Cricket Pakistan.
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