Pakistan skipper Babar Azam said that his team is very familiar with the conditions of the United Arab Emirates where the T20 World Cup will be played later this month.
Pakistan hasn’t played much on their home soil in the aftermath of the terror attacks on the Sri Lankan cricket team in 2009. Since then, Pakistan has played most of its games in the United Arab Emirates, the hosts for the T20 World Cup.
Our record in UAE is excellent: Babar Azam
Many experts believe that the Babar Azam-led team will have the advantage over other teams in the showpiece event because of their familiarity with the UAE pitches and conditions.
The Pakistan skipper acknowledged that fact and remarked that his team had attained the No.1 ICC ranking in T20 International cricket.
“Our record there is excellent, it’s the place where we became world No. 1. The performances we produced, both as a team and individually, show the conditions really suited us. Our record and consistency there is proof of that. These days we understand teams are playing more positive cricket, and we need to continue to do that, too,” Babar Azam told ESPNcricinfo.
You will have to perform consistently, otherwise you get demoted to the bench: Babar Azam
Pakistan will be entering the mega event without enough practice matches as their bilateral series against New Zealand and England at home got scrapped as both teams pulled out of the tour. Pakistan last played a T20I series against West Indies where they won 1-0 as three games in the series were washed by rain showers.
Babar mentioned that his team has to overcome certain areas like bowling in the death overs and they need to strengthen their middle-order issues in the T20 World Cup.
“We’re struggling in two areas, middle order and death bowling, and have done for some time. We’ve tried different combinations and tried to assess who could suit the team if they played in certain positions. It didn’t work out, unfortunately, but that’s cricket,” the Pakistan skipper said.
“If you select players, you cannot guarantee that they will perform. There are ups and downs, and the players we selected were chosen because they had performed elsewhere. You need to take your chances if you want to stay in the Pakistan team. You will have to perform consistently, otherwise you get demoted to the bench,” he added.
Pakistan will play their first game against arch-rivals India on October 24 at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.