Fans viciously mock Pakistan captain Babar Azam for making a “brave proclamation” following Karachi’s draw with New Zealand.
Pakistan and New Zealand squared off in the first of two Tests at Karachi’s National Stadium. Pakistan scored 438 runs in their first innings, owing to excellent Tons from skipper Babar Azam and bottom order hitter Agha Salman, as well as an 86-run knock by former skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed in his homecoming Test.
In response, New Zealand’s massive total of 612 runs, paced by former skipper Kane Williamson’s double tonne and senior starter Tom Latham’s century, resulted in a tie.
However, the Pakistan captain unexpectedly declared the second innings and set a goal of 138 runs for New Zealand in the fourth innings of the match. Subsequently, the hosts’ skipped Babar Azam went on to justify his action and dubbed it a ‘brave decision’.
Here’s what Babar Azam said on the decision of declaring the innings
“That is an audacious claim. We wanted to see the outcome, but the lighting was insufficient. Our fifth bowler was Salman, but after the first innings he was not well, he was sick for two days. I do not think we were a bowler short. The way Saud and Wasim Jr played, credit to them for playing positive cricket and getting up that partnership,” said Babar Azam during the post-match presentation after the Karachi red-ball fixture ended in a draw.
Although these words from the 28-year-old did not sit well with some cricket fans. They criticised Babar and branded his action as a ‘immature stunt’.
Aside from the fans, experienced cricket analyst and broadcaster Harsha Bhogle weighed in on Babar Azam’s choice.
“When you declare an innings and set a goal, you must think you have a reasonable chance of winning the game. “With this declaration, only two outcomes were possible: a tie or a loss,” Harsha remarked in a tweet.