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Wednesday July 17, 2024

PCB 'decides against' appointing Babar Azam as red-ball skipper

Aussie coach Jason Gillespie will perform his duties as Green Shirts’ head coach during Bangladesh encounter

By Syed Yahya Hussaini
June 15, 2024
Pakistan’s Babar Azam fields the ball during Test match between Australia and Pakistan at the Sydney Cricket Ground on January 5, 2024, in Sydney. —AFP
Pakistan’s Babar Azam fields the ball during Test match between Australia and Pakistan at the Sydney Cricket Ground on January 5, 2024, in Sydney. —AFP

Pakistan's T20 World Cup 2024 fiasco has served as a big blow to Babar Azam’s captaincy as the country's cricket board has decided to retain Shan Masood as Test captain, sources told Geo News on Saturday. 

As per the sources, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) management is disappointed of Babar’s leadership skills, particularly, after the T20 World Cup performance.

Therefore, Masood will lead Pakistan in the Test series against Bangladesh in August, they said, adding that the PCB has "decided against" appointing Babar. 

Whereas, Aussie coach Jason Gillespie will perform his duties as the Green Shirts’ head coach during the Bangladesh encounter in his first assignment.

Babar was appointed as the white-ball captain in 2019 and as Test skipper in 2020. Under leadership of the 29-year-old batter, the Green Shirts have not won any ICC or Asia Cup title so far.

Following this and the team’s drubbing in the ICC ODI World Cup 2023, the PCB under Zaka Ashraf appointed Shaheen Shah Afridi as white-ball captain.

Nevertheless, the stint lasted for a brief period as PCB chief Mohsin Naqvi, after taking charge of his office, reinstated Babar as the white-ball skipper on March 31. However, he did not announce his decision about the red-ball format.

On the other hand, Masood was given the Test format captaincy by the previous management.

It was believed that Babar could again get back his Test captaincy but the team’s recent performances have dashed all the hopes in this regard.

Pakistan have been eliminated from the T20 World Cup 2024 after the United States vs Ireland match was called off due to a wet outfield at the Central Broward Regional Park, Florida, on Friday.

The Men in Green have one more match to play against Ireland but that would be a formality as they are now out tournament.