Sehwag questions Babar Azam's place in Pakistan's T20 team amid World Cup exit

New York - Former Indian cricketer Virender Sehwag has criticized Pakistan captain Babar Azam following the national team’s group-stage exit from the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024. 

Babar Azam had a disappointing tournament, managing only 122 runs at a strike rate of 101.66, with his best score being 44 in a losing effort against the United States. Reflecting on Pakistan’s early exit, Sehwag commented: “If the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) decides to remove Babar Azam as white-ball captain, he should not be considered for selection in T20Is." 

Sehwag further explained his stance, saying, “As a leader, you have to think about what is best for the team. If Babar can't contribute significantly, he should step down and let someone who can play aggressively in the powerplay take over. I may sound harsh, but if the captain changes, Babar doesn’t deserve a place in the T20 team. His performances do not meet the demands of today’s T20 cricket.” 

Meanwhile, Babar Azam addressed his future as Pakistan captain after their consolation victory over Ireland. “When I gave up the captaincy in 2023, I felt it was the right time to step down. When the PCB reinstated me, it was their decision.” 

He added: “There’s speculation about me leaving the captaincy, but I’m not thinking about it right now. When I return, we will discuss everything that happened here. If I have to leave the captaincy, I will announce it openly and not hide behind anything. For now, it’s up to the PCB.” 

The Pakistan captain made it clear that any decisions about his leadership role will be transparent: “Whatever happens will happen in the open. It is eventually the PCB’s decision.”

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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