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Babar Azam has been named Pakistan’s vice-captain for their upcoming home series against Sri Lanka while Sarfaraz Ahmed has been retained as captain of the side. The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) said in a release that it had confirmed the appointments on the basis of recommendations made by Pakistan head coach and chief selector Misbah-ul-Haq and the PCB Cricket Committee. PCB Chairman Ehsan Mani said that Babar’s elevation is part of his gradual development as a future captain. “I am hopeful the trio of Misbah, Sarfaraz and Babar will do well for Pakistan cricket,” Mani said.
Misbah believes that he is better placed to get the best out of Sarfraz as he knows him “better than most of the cricketers” due to the fact that Sarfraz played under Misbah. “I have emphasised on changing the dressing room culture and mind-set of the players to achieve better results, and I believe Sarfaraz is a perfect fit to help me attain these objectives,” said Misbah.
“In the past couple of weeks, Sarfaraz and I have worked together on certain areas of his cricket that will enhance his overall performance. Both of us realise it is a performance-oriented world and we are expected to give our best every time we take the field. I look forward to working with him and hope we will succeed in changing the outlook of the Pakistan cricket team.”
Sarfraz echoed Misbah’s opinion. “I have played most of my cricket under Misbah and we know each other pretty well. I think we will make a good combination, which will contribute to improved performances of the side across all formats,” he said.
The ODI and T20I series will comprise three matches each and will be played between September 27 and October 9. While the ODIs will be played in Karachi, the T20I series will be played in Lahore.