Pakistan captain Babar Azam is looking forward to the seven-match series against England, starting in Karachi this week to help him return to his top form after a lean Asia Cup earlier this month. The batting dynamo managed just 68 runs in six games in the continental tournament where Pakistan finished runners-up to Sri Lanka.
England is set for their first tour of Pakistan for 17 years, in a series seen as part of the build-up towards next month’s men’s Twenty20 World Cup in Australia.
Babar Azam lost the No.1 spot in ICC T20I rankings to fellow teammate
Speaking to reporters earlier today ahead of the series, Azam said, “I hope to return to my best in this series… and it will be good if it happens before the World Cup.”
Babar Azam’s lean patch saw him dethroned as the world’s top-rated T20I batsman, after ruling the rankings for 1,155 days, relinquishing the title to his opening partner Mohammad Rizwan last week.
Azam, who is Pakistan’s top T20I run-getter with 2,754 runs in 80 games, said he keeps things simple while batting. The 27-year-old added, “I think less about failures when going through a bad patch. As a batsman your focus is to do your best to regain your form and it would be great to do that before the World Cup.”
Babar Azam wants to use the England series as an opportunity to prep up for the T20 World Cup
Azam was the highest scorer in last year’s Twenty20 World Cup held in the United Arab Emirates, with 303 runs in a tournament where Pakistan crashed out in the semi-finals.
“Obviously they have come to Pakistan after 17 years so it’s a big series and will help us build us towards the World Cup so all the players will utilise this,” he concluded.
The matches will be held in Karachi (September 22, 23, 25) and in Lahore (September 28, 30 and October 2).