Pakistan has played all their matches in the ongoing tour of New Zealand without regular captain Babar Azam as Shadab Khan has been at the helm in T20Is. Babar Azam will also miss the first Test against New Zealand in Mount Manganui, forcing keeper-batsman Mohammad Rizwan to captain the side. Mohammad Rizwan revealed that their regular captain has been training even with the injury (thumb fracture).
Babar Azam, who the PCB announced as their all-format skipper this year, could not feature in the T20I series due to a thumb fracture. In the absence of the number one T20I batsman, Pakistan struggled on the batting front as New Zealand beat them in the first two matches convincingly. Mohammad Rizwan’s masterclass at the top of the order in the third T20I enabled the tourists to eke out a consolation win.
Mohammad Rizwan underlined that they would miss Babar Azam in the first Test; however, acknowledged their depth in the batting and bowling department. Rizwan added that their captain has been training even with the injury and could help the youngsters too when not playing.
“We will definitely miss our superstar Babar bhai, but we have still got depth in our batting and bowling department. Babar is in training even with the injury, which is praiseworthy. Meanwhile, he also helps other batsmen even when not playing for Pakistan,” Rizwan said as quoted by Pakistan Cricket Board.
Our Test squad is more experienced than the T20I squad: Mohammad Rizwan
The keeper-batsman remains optimistic about their chances in Test cricket since it is more experienced than the T20I one. The 28-year old said that they have the likes of Shan Masood, Azhar Ali, Fawad Alam, and Haris Sohail in their batting department while specialists like Mohammad Abbas and Yasir Shah will bolster their bowling unit.
“Our Test squad is more experienced than the T20I squad. We have the likes of Shan Masood, Azhar Ali, Fawad Alam and Haris Sohail at our disposal in batting. Meanwhile, we have Test specialist bowlers like Mohammad Abbas, Yasir Shah and a young Shaheen Afridi in our side,” he added.