Sarfaraz Ahmed has been retained as the captain of Pakistan for the upcoming ODI and T20I series against Sri Lanka. However, Babar Azam has been named the vice-captain for the series. Ehsan Mani, the PCB chairman confirmed the appointments on Friday (September 13).
Sarfaraz Ahmed, who has led the team in T20I since April 2016, had faced many questions after Pakistan failed to qualify for the semifinals in the recently concluded ICC World Cup 2019. It was worth noting that he had led the ODI team to their maiden Champions Trophy win in 2017. In addition to that, he has led Pakistan in 13 Tests, 48 ODIs and 34 T20Is where Pakistan registered win in four Tests, 26 and 29 matches respectively. He even took the side to the top of the T20I rankings.
“I feel humbled and honoured to have been awarded an extension to my captaincy term. I have enjoyed captaining the Pakistan cricket team and look forward to improving my leadership qualities under the new set-up of Misbah-ul-Haq who also has a proven record as captain,” said Sarfaraz Ahmed.
He shared he and Misbah-ul-Haq will make a good combination as they know each other pretty well and that would help to improve the team as well. He, however, admitted that he is aware of not doing justice to their potential in ODIs. However, he is hopeful that they will turn the table in the upcoming season.
Misbah-ul-Haq said, “Both (Sarfaraz Ahmed and Babar Azam) are one of the most talented and exceptionally gifted Pakistan cricketers and thoroughly deserve these assignments.”
“Consistency backed up by good performance has been my yardstick for recommending Sarfaraz as captain. Furthermore, I think I am better placed to get the best out of Sarfaraz as I know him better than most of the cricketers as he has played most of his cricket under my captaincy. I have always been an admirer of his commitment and the energy he brings to the side,” he added.
Misbah has emphasised on changing the dressing room culture and mind-set of the players so that they could do better. He and Sarfaraz have been working together on certain areas for the past couple of weeks that will help him in his performance.
On the other hand, The selection committee will announce a 19-member squad for the T20I and ODI series on Monday (September 16), which will be followed by a camp at the National Cricket Academy, starting from Wednesday. The final squad will be announced on September 23.