Babar Azam watches Kohli's game to fine-tune batting

Published June 14, 2019
Babar Azam bats in the nets during a practice session in Bristol. ─ AFP
Babar Azam bats in the nets during a practice session in Bristol. ─ AFP

Babar Azam has revealed he models himself on India captain Virat Kohli just days before the fierce rivals clash in an explosive World Cup showdown.

Babar holds the key for Pakistan against old foes India in Manchester on Sunday and the batsman has been fine-tuning his game by watching videos of the supremely talented Kohli.

Babar showed his class by scoring a brilliant 63 in Pakistan's 348-8 when they beat pre-tournament favourites England earlier in the World Cup.

His heroics gave Pakistan their only win so far in the tournament, with defeats against the West Indies and Australia, while their match against Sri Lanka was rained off.

While there is no love lost between India and Pakistan on or off the pitch, Babar is willing to admit he watches Kohli's batting and tries to learn from him.

“I watch his batting and the way he bats in various conditions and try to learn from them,” Babar told reporters.

“I try to learn with experience. This is my process of learning, so I try my 100 per cent.

“His (Kohli) winning ratio is higher (for India) so I am trying to achieve that as well.”

Babar, 24, says Pakistan's Champions Trophy final demolition of India two years ago has increased the team's confidence and they could claim another surprise success against India this weekend.

“The Champions Trophy win gave us confidence and will also help here as well because the team is mostly the same and that win is always an inspiration,” Babar said.

Pakistan, trounced by 124 runs in the opening match of the Champions Trophy by India, hit back by crushing their bitter rivals in the final. Their 180-run win at the Oval is the biggest over India in all ODIs.

“That win can never go off our memories and it's a big inspiration,” he said.

The India-Pakistan clash will be watched by a vast global audience and Babar insists the pressure will spur his unpredictable team to produce their best.

“We are well prepared for this match because India and Pakistan matches are exciting and demanding and the whole world watches it,” Babar said.

“The whole team is positive so we are looking forward to the match. Not only me but all the players want to finish on a high, whoever hits form wants to win it.”

And Babar is confident Pakistan will handle India's potent pace attack, led by world number one ODI bowler Jasprit Bumrah.

“No doubt, India have a good bowling attack but we have played well against England who also have a very good pace attack so all of us are confident the Indian pace attack will be properly handled,” Babar said.

Opinion

Looking northeast

Looking northeast

By putting together and leading the $62 billion CPEC, China is playing a potentially transformational role in Pakistan’s economy.
The challenges ahead
Updated 23 Apr 2021

The challenges ahead

Pakistan must complete the fencing of its border with Afghanistan and insulate itself to the extent possible.
The big bang
23 Apr 2021

The big bang

A high population growth rate has a disastrous impact.
Fiscal management
23 Apr 2021

Fiscal management

When the economy expands, do not spend all the extra money.
Blaming the victim
Updated 22 Apr 2021

Blaming the victim

The psychological consequences of blaming the victim, or delegitimising their experiences, are far-reaching.

Editorial

TTP resurgence?
Updated 23 Apr 2021

TTP resurgence?

The govt and military must ensure that their focus and resources are focused on dismantling terror networks that still exist.
23 Apr 2021

Tehran visit

THE two key takeaways from Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi’s trip to Iran on Wednesday were the need for...
23 Apr 2021

Road to racial justice

THE death of George Floyd last May caused global shock and outrage, and led to mass protests in both the US and...
22 Apr 2021

Capping power debt

THE suggested revision in the Circular Debt Management Plan, which aims to cap the flow or addition of new debt to...
22 Apr 2021

Istanbul postponement

WHILE the postponement of the Istanbul peace talks on Afghanistan, which were scheduled to be held later this week,...
22 Apr 2021

No mining precautions

YET another accident caused by a methane gas explosion has been reported from the dangerous coal mines of...