Babar Azam To Meet PCB Chief Following Pakistan’s Poor Show In Cricket World Cup 2023: Report

Pakistan cricket team skipper Babar Azam© AFP

Pakistan skipper Babar Azam arrived in Lahore on Monday following the failed World Cup campaign, with the word going around that he will not voluntarily step down and wait for the the Pakistan Cricket Board to take a call. Babar, who was received by his family members at the Lahore International Airport, looked downcast as he came out of the building surrounded by security personnel. The insider word is that Babar will meet PCB chief Zaka Ashraf this week and will take a call on his all-format captaincy after the meeting. Pakistan, the 1992 champions, failed to make it to the semifinals after an unimpressive run where they lost five of the nine league matches. Babar was first made the white-ball captain in late 2019 and, in 2021, he also took over as the Test skipper. He has led Pakistan in two Asia Cups, two T20 World Cups and the ongoing ODI World Cup without winning any title.

The team’s dismal performance in India has divided the cricket fraternity in the country on whether Babar should be retained as captain or other options should be considered.

Prominent among those supporting him are PCB’s former chairman, Ramiz Raja, and former all-rounder Shahid Afridi, who had initially said pacer Shaheen Shah Afridi was ready to be Pakistan captain.

Even as the debate rages on social media and various other platforms on whether Babar should be replaced or not, PCB chief Zaka Ashraf has said that he will consult some former players in the coming days before deciding the future course of action.

Pakistan have two tough tours coming up against Australia and New Zealand in December-January.

Pakistan batter Shan Masood, wicketkeeper-batter Sarfaraz Ahmed and Shaheen Shah Afridi are being seen as possible captaincy candidates.

With the team scheduled to leave for Australia in early December, the PCB has two weeks to decide on the future line of action.

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