'Fake king': Babar, Rizwan blamed for Pakistan's elimination

Sikandar Bakht says Babar Azam should be replaced as a captain as he lacked leadership skills

Sports Desk
(L-R) Pakistan captain Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan run between the wickets during the ICC Twenty20 World Cup 2024 match against Canada at Nassau County International Cricket Stadium in New York on June 11, 2024. —AFP

Cricketer Ahmad Shahzad has blamed skipper Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan for Pakistan’s elimination from the T20 World Cup 2024, suggesting the national side should get rid of the entire “dosti-yaari” group instantly.

“It is time to hold the group of 6-8 people including the captain accountable as because of this group Pakistan has stooped so low,” said Shahzad following the team’s poor performance in the 20-team tournament.

Slamming the senior players, he asked the board management to make them play in the domestic circuit. If a crackdown was not launched on the group even now, then a good team was out of the question, he said.

Pakistan were eliminated from the T20 World Cup 2024 after the United States vs Ireland match was called off due to a wet outfield at the Central Broward Regional Park, Florida, on Friday.

The Green Shirts have one more match to play against Ireland but that would be a formality as they are now out tournament.

The former opening batsman blamed Babar and Rizwan’s personal milestones for the national side’s poor show throughout and especially in the mega tournament. Reinstating Babar as a captain was an awful blunder, he said.

“The fake king and the group of 6-8 people should be axed from the team,” he reemphasised.

Shahzad offered his services for the team saying “if selectors believe I am a better choice, then I am available for the team”.

Cricket analyst Sikandar Bakht also echoed Shahzad’s statement saying that Babar should be replaced as a captain as he lacked leadership skills.

However, he said, some talented boys should be retained.

Meanwhile, commenting on the team’s performance former cricketer Imran Nazir said the amount of pressure under which Pakistan played, they did not deserve to advance into the Super 8 stage.

Additionally, Pakistan opener Imam Ul Haq advised strengthening Pakistan’s domestic cricket recommending an increased remuneration for the domestic players.

He found faults with spinners and middle-order batters saying they could not perform for a long time.