HomePlayers CareerBabar Azam Just Loves to Bat

Babar Azam Just Loves to Bat

9 years into his international career, Babar Azam has always been in the news for one reason or the other. May it be his prolific run with the bat for God knows how long now or his captaincy and run-ins with the Pakistan cricket board for several reasons.

More recently he got to 10000 T20 runs, becoming the quickest to get to the landmark in just 271 innings, but he has also taken 7764 balls to get there, making him the 2nd slowest of the 13 batters to score 10000 T20 runs.

As I said, positive reason or negative, Babar Azam always makes the news, but that’s not what this one is all about. We all know about his 10066 T20 runs or his 8646 List A runs or his almost 6000 FC runs.

So what is it about? So the other day, I stumbled upon this video on the A Sports YouTube channel where they currently cover the PSL tournament on a daily basis under the moniker of “The Pavillion”, often including questions that were sent to them via Twitter.

Now on this certain episode, they received a question where the panelists were requested to talk about their first impressions of Babar Azam. What is even more interesting is who are the panellists on this show?

Let’s see, they have got Wasim Akram (1984-2003), Misbah-ul-Haq (2001-2017), Mohammad Hafeez (2003-2021) and Azhar Ali (2010-2022). That’s 4 people where at least one of whom has appeared for the Pakistan national team almost every year from 1984 to 2022. That’s 38 years, 5 different decades and at least 4 generations of cricketers.

So what were their views on Babar Azam when they first met him?

Azhar Ali

“Immediately as he arrived, it felt like he belongs here. Some players always worry about their place in the team, but he didn’t. All he wanted to do was to contribute towards the team’s cause. Runs or no runs, it never changed him. Some people might think they’re undroppable once they’ve got a lot of runs and are often rendered pretty lonely due to their buying into their own hype, he (Babar) wasn’t one of them.”

Mohammad Hafeez

“The first time I watched him play was in a club in Lahore and Muddi Pa told me — agle Kai saalan ch sirf Babar ne khelda hona hai” (think we’re gonna see Babar bat a lot in the future) and when Babar finally arrived on the international scene, all I noticed were his (Babar) work ethics. The hunger never dies. The hunger to learn, improve, and strengthen the work ethic keeps getting stronger. Once he is done batting in the nets, he doesn’t fool around, he just starts fielding or bowling. The things that make one a great professional have always been in Babar, his never-ending desire to keep grinding, that’s how he has competed with the top guys in the last few on the international stage


“He just loves his batting. He absolutely hates getting out, anything below a hundred is not an option. Since a very young age, club cricket or international, there’s zero satisfaction even after getting to his hundred. Desire to turn a 50 to a 100 and 100 to a 200. He wants to improve every day. Most importantly, he would always stick to the basics, the discipline always stays the same. Even while practising, something as small as a fault in technique would bother him a lot and he would almost remind himself to correct his mistake the next ball. His desire to improve upon his mistakes is the key to his consistency. He debuted under my leadership in tests and the times were rather difficult, New Zealand tour, Australia tour, but eventually everyone that if he keeps going, he will only get better and he eventually did.”

Wasim Akram

“He is just a nice and happy guy who wants to hard work. I remember first watching him when I was commentating at the Under 19 World Cup 2010 in New Zealand and he was the captain of the Pakistan Under 19 team that made it to the final. Over there he kept getting runs and even bowled some off-spin as well. Ultimately, he was all about working hard and being easy-going”

Now after going through all of these opinions, one might think of their opinions as a bit of a pandering but it is important to remember that each of these four individuals have been involved with the cricket setup in Lahore for decades, Lahore being the city that Babar hails from.

But the huge takeaway would be a sentiment that each of these four individuals keeps echoing, Babar Azam just loves to bat. He has this almost eternally unfulfilled desire to keep batting and batting for as long as possible.

Babar, who has previously said that his favourite Pakistan batter is Javed Miandad, seems to often impersonate the biggest trait of the great man and that is to stay consistent for long periods or time with almost no signs of budging on the horizons.

A rather calm and fun-loving character who is often seen off the field cracking jokes and sharing a laugh or two with his teammate, it won’t be a surprise if almost everyone who met Babar would attest to the words of these four legends.

Runs, no runs, captaincy issues, and questions over his form in a multinational tournament aside, one thing is certain. Babar Azam’s love and passion for batting and, by extension, for the game, is almost unparalleled.


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