“I Let Myself Down”: Babar Azam’s Deputy Shadab Khan On World Cup Performance

Calling for a change in “cultural” mindset, Pakistan’s vice-captain Shadab Khan has voiced his support for skipper Babar Azam, who is being blamed for the team’s disastrous showing in the World Cup. There has been a growing demand from several former Pakistan cricketers for the removal of Babar as captain after the team could not qualify for the World Cup semifinals. However, Shadab indicated the responsibility for the defeats doesn’t rest solely on the captain.

“This represents a cultural difference. When we emerge victorious, it is attributed solely to the captain’s triumph. But in times of defeat, the responsibility for the loss falls squarely on the captain’s shoulders. This should change,” Shadab told reporters after Pakistan’s 93-run defeat to England in their last World Cup match here on Saturday.

Babar, who started the World Cup as the world’s No. 1 batter, failed to bring his A-game to the fore and his captaincy came under scrutiny.

Back home, there has been talk about wholesale changes in the team including the removal of Babar as skipper.

Shadab, an all-rounder, also rued his inability to make an impact in the tournament.

“I have let myself down, I didn’t live up to my potential as a bowler that has impacted the team’s performance. You always try to win a tournament, this could not happen. We are out of the semifinals. Coaches, players, support staff everyone is disappointed.

“Whenever a tournament starts, we have to improve in all three departments. As a team, we failed to adapt to modern-day cricket,” he said.

Hope it’s not the end for me: Rashid

The ageing England side might be in for a reboot after the World Cup debacle, but leg-spinner Adil Rashid, who finished as England’s leading wicket-taker, hopes it’s not his “last” outing for England in ODI cricket.

“I still enjoy playing 50-overs cricket for England. I will try my best to keep performing and playing till the time it’s finished. At the moment I feel good. Hopefully, this is not my last. I want to play for as long as I can,” Rashid said.

Rashid returned with figures of 2/55, and his dismissal of Shadab with a googly became one of the highlights of England’s 93-run win.

“To get a batsman through the gate is always a nice feeling. That’s one of the things I try to work hard in the nets,” he said.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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