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Friday July 19, 2024

Indian teen travels to Hyderabad to watch Babar Azam play

The 15-year-old is a big Babar Azam admirer from the Indian city of Bhopal

By Web Desk
October 08, 2023
Pakistan captain Babar Azam (left) and his Indian fan Alisha. — AFP/PTI/File
Pakistan captain Babar Azam (left) and his Indian fan Alisha. — AFP/PTI/File

Pakistan captain Babar Azam's fan base is not restricted to Pakistan, as the appreciation for his batting prowess and sportsmanship surpasses borders.

One such fan of the skipper, who has garnered immense attention during the ongoing ICC World Cup, also resides in India.

The 15-year-old Alisha is a big Babar Azam admirer from the Indian city of Bhopal. The teenager reached Hyderabad only to watch one of her favourite cricketers play, whose face she has plastered on the back of her mobile phone's cover.

The schoolgirl travelled from Bhopal and was one of the few spectators at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, seen cheering on Pakistan in its match against the Netherlands.

Alisha plans to fly back to her hometown eventually, but little did she know that she'd be famous for being a prominent addition to Hyderabad's grandstand after she covered her head with a green scarf and waved Pakistan's flag.

Alisha, who was accompanied in the stands by her mother, gave the Chicago-based "Chacha", Mohammad Bashir, some tough competition.

While Pakistani fans are finding it difficult to reach India amid a delay in visa issuance, the Green Shirts have found some support from local Indian fans in Hyderabad.

"I have been a fan of Babar for the past four years. I started a fanpage as well on social media but deactivated as I had to focus on my studies," the teenager said, speaking to PTI, an Indian press agency.

The love for cricket, she added, runs in the family, as both her parents are also massive fans of Pakistani veteran cricketers Shahidi Afridi and Javed Miandad. While Alisha's mother is a fan of Afridi, her father admires Miandad's cricket.

"It is good to see that people are supporting both the teams. I am an Indian first and love the likes of Shubman Gill and Virat Kohli but I also have the same love for Babar. I hope the relations between the countries get better one day," she said.

The Babar Azam fan is aiming to get hold of the much-anticipated Pakistan vs India game's ticket. She plans to stay back to witness the rivals face one another in the grand match on October 10 before heading home.