Babar fully confident of bringing T20 World Cup trophy home

LAHORE   -   Pakistan cricket team captain Babar Azam shared his optimistic outlook for the upcoming ICC T20 World Cup 2024, expressing ‘double confidence’ in his team’s ability to bring the trophy home.

Addressing a press conference on Wednesday, Babar highlighted the solid team combination and focused preparations aimed at excelling in crucial matches. “I have immense faith in my team, and I believe we will deliver our best performance to win the coveted T20 World Cup trophy,” he said. His confidence stems not only from the team’s current form but also from a cohesive strategy designed to maximize their strengths in high-stakes games.

Babar also appreciated the proactive approach of PCB Chairman Syed Mohsin Raza Naqvi, whose efforts to motivate the team include a substantial financial incentive. “PCB Chairman Mohsin Naqvi has been incredibly supportive, encouraging every player to give their all. His promise of a $100,000 reward for each player significantly bolsters our motivation,” he explained. Addressing selection decisions, skipper Babar Azam discussed the exclusion of Mohammad Haris and Aamer Jamal, noting strategic considerations based on form and fitness within the team structure. “It’s about finding the right balance and ensuring every player selected can contribute effectively in their role,” he said. For Haris, it was a matter of top-order abundance, while Jamal needs more exposure to adapt his skills for the T20 format.

During a press briefing before the team’s departure for Ireland, Babar Azam addressed questions regarding the inclusion of seasoned right-arm pacer Hasan Ali, clarifying that Hasan was selected as a backup rather than a direct member of the 15-player World Cup squad. “I’ve been hearing questions about why Hasan Ali is back. The selectors have clarified that his role is as a backup, not as a core member of the World Cup squad. His selection is based on his vast experience,” he explained. He also emphasized the collective decision behind this choice, adding, “It’s not the decision of a single individual. Seven selectors were involved in choosing him for his backup role.” Babar Azam also highlighted the limited time available for player rotation ahead of the T20 World Cup 2024, set to commence shortly in the USA and West Indies. “With the World Cup just around the corner, our time for rotation is quite limited.

In the upcoming matches, we aim to solidify our team dynamics, ensuring that the players we intend to feature prominently in the World Cup receive adequate game time. We’re nearly finalized on our optimal bowling and batting line-ups, and plan to field our strongest XI in the remaining fixtures,” he remarked.

The involvement of coach Gary Kirsten, despite his physical absence, was highlighted as a positive influence. “Gary stays actively involved through daily updates and strategic discussions, which enhances our preparations,” he added. In closing, Azam addressed the team’s strategy for the high-profile match against India, emphasizing a comprehensive approach rather than focusing on individual players like Virat Kohli. “Our plans are tailored for each team and situation, ensuring we are prepared for all competitors,” he concluded.


The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Monday unveiled the ‘Matrix Jersey’ of the national team for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024, scheduled to be held in June in the West Indies and the United States of America (USA). Pakistan’s jersey for the upcoming mega event was unveiled in a star-studded ceremony held here at Gaddafi Stadium. Captain Babar Azam, alongside Shaheen Shah Afridi, Mohammad Rizwan, Naseem Shah and Saim Ayub attended the ceremony and also posed with the newly-launched jersey. The PCB also released a minute-long promo to unveil the “Matrix Jersey”, starring Babar, Shaheen, Rizwan, Naseem, Saim and Shadab Khan.

The 2009 champions Pakistan will start their T20 World Cup 2024 campaign against co-host USA on June 6 before taking on arch-rivals India on June 9 in Nassau County International Cricket Stadium in New York.

 The Green Shirts will then take on Canada and Ireland in their remaining group-stage fixtures on June 11 and 16 respectively.

Azhar Khan is an accomplished senior sports journalist with extensive experience in the field. He can be reached at Follow him on Twitter at @azharmasood786

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