Updated March 31st, 2024 at 20:34 IST

Games of Thrones: How Babar Azam snatched Pakistan captaincy back from Shaheen Afridi in few months

Babar Azam, hailed as one of the modern-day batting maestros, was initially appointed as Pakistan's captain across white ball formats in 2020.

Reported by: Vishal Tiwari
Babar Azam and Shaheen Shah Afridi | Image:Sky Sports
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In the unstable landscape of cricket in Pakistan, leadership dynamics within teams can shift dramatically, sometimes resembling the intense political maneuvering of a fictional epic. Pakistan cricket, known for its unpredictability, witnessed one such intriguing plot twist as Babar Azam reclaimed the captaincy from Shaheen Afridi in a span of just a few months.

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The Rise of Babar Azam

Babar Azam, hailed as one of the modern-day batting maestros, was initially appointed as Pakistan's captain across white ball formats in 2020. With his exceptional batting prowess and calm demeanor, Azam was seen as the natural choice to lead the team across formats.

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Babar Azam was eventually appointed the captain across all formats and under his leadership, Pakistan showed promising signs, registering impressive victories and displaying a more structured approach on the field. Babar Azam's ability to command respect with his batting acumen made him a popular figure among fans.

The Shaheen Afridi Interlude

On the other hand, Shaheen Afridi, Pakistan's premier fast bowler, was handed the T20I captaincy, carving a unique leadership path for himself. He was handed the captaincy after Babar Azam stepped down from all formats due to a poor show in the ODI World Cup 2023.

However, as the saying goes, "Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown." Afridi's stint as the T20I captain was not without its challenges. The team's inconsistent performances and internal conflicts led to questions about his captaincy, eventually resulting in his removal. 

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The Comeback of Babar Azam

Amidst growing speculations and behind-the-scenes discussions, Babar Azam emerged as the consensus choice to steer the ship once again. His reappointment as the captain in white ball formats signaled a return to stability and continuity in Pakistan cricket.

Babar Azam's second innings as the captain has started just before the T20 World Cup 2024, which is scheduled to be held in the West Indies and the USA in June. Azam will lead the Pakistan cricket team in the upcoming World Cup. 
 

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Published March 31st, 2024 at 20:34 IST