Babar Azam, the newly appointed skipper of Pakistan cricket team in the white-ball cricket, is one of the top-ranked T20I batsmen in the current ICC rankings. The young batsman averages 50-72 in the shortest format, having amassed 1471 runs in 38 T20Is at a strike rate of 128.13.
Recently, popular Indian commentator, Harsha Bhogle has challenged the effectiveness of Babar Azam in T20 cricket. Harsha Bhogle questioned the strike-rate of Pakistan’s batsman.
However, at the same time, Harsha feels that the strike rate should be given preference over batting average in T20 cricket. Bhogle said:
“For the major part of his first two or three years, Babar Azam had a batting average of 50 or 55 but a strike rate of 120. If you are playing with a strike rate of 110 or 115 in T20 cricket, the longer you bat, the more you are ensuring your team’s defeat. Suddenly the batting average is running contrary to what batting average does in any other form of cricket,”
Earlier, in an interview, Pakistani legendary player Shahid Afridi also stated something similar about the 25-year-old batsman. During the interview, Shahid Afridi claimed that he was very skeptical of Babar Azam distinguishing himself in the T20I format. He had said:
“I thought Babar Azam would survive in Tests and ODIs but not in T20Is. This was my opinion. But the way that guy has polished and groomed himself. The shots he plays. It depends on the goals you set yourself. It is always hard work. If you don’t work hard enough it can never be possible. In order to achieve any goal you always have to work hard,”