In a surprising turn of events, Babar Azam has stepped down as the captain of the Pakistan cricket team in all formats. The decision comes after a series of setbacks during the ODI World Cup 2023 in India, where Pakistan failed to qualify for the semi-finals despite Babar’s notable individual performance.

It is worth mentioning that Babar shared his decision through a heartfelt note on social media, expressing gratitude and reflecting on his journey as the leader of the team.

Pakistan’s subpar World Cup 2023 journey

The ODI World Cup 2023 started on a promising note for Pakistan, with victories against the Netherlands and Sri Lanka. However, their momentum was disrupted by a defeat to arch-rivals India in the third fixture. Subsequently, the team faced three consecutive losses, making their qualification for the semi-finals a challenging task. Although they managed to secure wins in their next two games, it was too late to salvage their campaign. Moreover, their final league game against England also ended in a loss, marking the end of Pakistan’s World Cup journey with four wins in nine games.

Babar Azam’s individual performance

As far as Babar’s individual performance in the event is concerned, the backbone of Pakistan’s batting lineup showcased his skills during the World Cup, amassing 320 runs in nine matches at an average of 40 and a strike rate of 82.90. Despite his commendable efforts, the team fell short of securing a spot in the top four, leading to disappointment among fans and experts as they raised questions about Babar’s leadership.

Also READ: Pakistan legend Shahid Afridi reveals his choice for Babar Azam’s successor in white-ball cricket

Babar’s emotional farewell note

Babar took to his official Twitter handle to share the news of his resignation. In his heartfelt note, he reminisced about the moment he was appointed captain in 2019 and the highs and lows he experienced during his four-year tenure. Babar acknowledged the collective efforts of players, coaches, and management that led to Pakistan’s ascent to the number one spot in the white-ball format.

The decision and future role

Expressing that it was a difficult decision, Babar further stated that he believes it is the right time for this call. Despite stepping down from captaincy, he affirmed his commitment to continue representing Pakistan as a player in all three formats. Babar also extended his support to the new captain and the team, offering his experience and dedication.

Gratitude and national pride

In his farewell note, Babar also expressed gratitude to the passionate Pakistan cricket fans for their unwavering support throughout his captaincy. He thanked the Pakistan Cricket Board for entrusting him with the significant responsibility and concluded with the patriotic slogan, “PAKISTAN ZINDABAD.”

“I vividly remember the moment when I received the call from PCB to lead Pakistan in 2019. Over the past four years, I’ve experienced many highs and lows on and off the field, but I wholeheartedly and passionately aimed to maintain Pakistan’s pride and respect in the cricket world.” wrote Babar.

“Reaching the number 1 spot in the white-ball format was a result of the collective efforts of players, coaches, and management but I’d like to express my gratitude to passionate Pakistan cricket fans for their unwavering support during this journey. Today, I am stepping down as the captain of Pakistan in all formats. It’s a difficult decision but I feel it is a right time for this call,” he added.

“I will continue to represent Pakistan as a player in all three formats. I am here to support the new captain and the team with my experience and dedication. I want to express my sincere thanks to the Pakistan Cricket Board for entrusting me with this significant responsibility. PAKISTAN ZINDABAD,” the 29-year-old concluded.

Also READ: From Jos Buttler to Haris Rauf – Flop playing XI of the ODI World Cup 2023

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