"I'm glad they have..." - Sanjay Manjrekar happy with Babar Azam's demotion in Pakistan's batting order

Published - 13 Jun 2024, 10:58 PM | Updated - 13 Jun 2024, 10:59 PM

Sanjay Manjrekar, Babar Azam, Mohammad Rizwan
Sanjay Manjrekar, Babar Azam, Mohammad Rizwan (Credits: X)

Former India batsman Sanjay Manjrekar has criticized Pakistan stars Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan for their batting display in the ongoing ICC T20 World Cup 2024.

The onus was on the Pakistan captain and the wicketkeeper-batsman to lead their team's charge with the bat in the competition. However, they have failed to live up to the expectations and have faced severe criticism for their cautious approach with the bat so far. They opened the innings in the first two games before Saim Ayub replaced Babar Azam at the top of the order in the third game.

In the first game against the USA, Babar scored 44 runs from 43 balls while Rizwan was out for 9 off 8 balls as Pakistan suffered a shock defeat. In the second game against India, Babar could only score 13 runs while Rizwan scored 31 runs in 44 balls. With both Babar and Rizwan failing to impress with the bat against India, Pakistan lost the game by six runs while chasing 120 runs.

In the do-or-die third game against Canada, their strike rate did not improve much either as both of them maintained a strike rate of 100. Rizwan scored 53 runs off as many balls while Babar scored run-a-ball 33 although Pakistan managed to win the crucial game.

Sanjay Manjrekar slams Babar and Rizwan:

Speaking on Star Sports, Sanjay Manjrekar slammed Babar and Rizwan for not showing any intent with the bat in the T20 World Cup and also praised the team management for demoting the captain to number three. The former cricketer-turned-commentator also opined that Babar and Rizwan cannot open together for Pakistan in the shortest format of the game.

"I'm glad they have made a change in the batting order. Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan can't be opening together. Both of them were not really keen to strike early, so they put somebody else in at the top. Left-hand, right-hand combination is not such a bad thing. So some good things happening there," Manjrekar said after Pakistan's win over Canada.

Manjrekar further said that batting still remains a big concern for Pakistan before praising Mohammad Amir for his bowling display. He also backed the Men in Green to beat Ireland in their final group game. Manjrekar, however, made it clear that he is not very confident about Pakistan's chances of doing well in the tournament even if they qualify for the Super 8s.

"Batting is still a bit of a concern. Mohammad Amir is coming into his own. So I see them just being better than Ireland to win the game. But once they get into the Super Eight, that is going to be another sort of acid test for them because they are not looking as good as some of the other teams that have gone through," Manjrekar added.



Sanjay Manjrekar Babar Azam Mohammad Rizwan Pakistan national cricket team ICC T20 World Cup