Pakistan Cricket Board has appointed Babar Azam as new ODI captain of the side. With his appointment, Azam will now lead Pakistan in ODI and T20 formats.
Babar Azam has enjoyed stupendous form across all three formats in the past 12 months. Last year, he was named T20 captain of the side after Pakistan suffering a 3-0 defeat at the hands of Sri Lanka on home soil. After Sarfaraz Ahmed being sacked as the captain, Azhar Ali was appointed Test captain of the side by Pakistan Cricket Board.
Pakistan Head Coach Misbah Ul Haq expressed his pleasure with Babar Azam getting appointed as captain of the limited-overs side. Azhar Ali will continue to lead the side in red-ball cricket after managing to win his last series against Bangladesh on home soil.
Pakistan Cricket Board believed that it was perfect time for Babar Azam to lead the side in white-ball cricket. Azam is currently placed third in the latest ICC ODI Ranking behind Indian duo of Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma. Since May 2018, Babar Azam has accumulated 1570 runs in 33 matches at an average of 58.14 with 4 centuries and 8 half-centuries to his name. He previously has led Pakistan U-19 in the 2012 World Cup, where he finished as the leading run-scorer for the side.
Since being named T20 captain of the national side last year, he has led Pakistan in five T20I matches, winning two and losing three. Babar Azam also captained Central Punjab side in the first-class Quaid Azam Trophy. In absence of regular captain Imad Wasim, he also led Karachi Kings in the Pakistan Super League.
Babar Azam will lead the side in limited-overs format in foreseeable future. The upcoming tour of England has been mutually cancelled after both the cricket boards reach an agreement due to Covid-19 Pandemic. With cricket tours getting cancelled due to Pandemic, it remains to be seen when will Pakistan resume playing international cricket.