Babar blames poor batting for T20 World Cup exit

Babar blames poor batting for T20 World Cup exit


Babar Azam to extend stay in USA

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Reuters/Web Desk - Pakistan captain Babar Azam said on Sunday the team's batting let them down at the Twenty20 World Cup and apologised to fans for failing to reach the Super Eight stage.

Pakistan fell to the tournament's biggest upset when the United States, a tier-two member of the game, beat the 2009 champions via Super Over. Defeat by arch-rivals India then left Babar's side with a mountain to climb to advance.

India and the US bagged the two Super Eight slots from Group A while Pakistan finished third after Sunday's laboured three-wicket victory against Ireland.

"Thank you so much for supporting us, and sorry for that performance...," Babar said after the match in Florida.

"I know the fans and the team are saddened by this. It is not any one player's fault. We all made a mistake."

Babar had stepped down as captain of all three formats after Pakistan failed to make the knockout stage of the 50-overs World Cup in India last year, but was reinstated as white-ball skipper ahead of the 20-overs showpiece in the U.S. and West Indies.

Amid sub-par performances at the tournament, talk of rifts within the camp surfaced, while Pakistan Cricket Board's chief promised "major surgery" on the team after their exit was confirmed last week.

Pakistan's batting was a huge disappointment as they failed to make the most of the powerplay overs and could not get partnerships established.

"The pitches here helped the fast bowlers a little but I think overall our batting did not click," said Babar.

"We lost two crucial matches even when we were in charge."

All-rounder Imad Wasim has said the team needed a complete reset of their approach to white-ball cricket and Babar agreed.

"Every player has to think, because cricket has become very fast. With modern cricket, you must have game awareness," he said.

"You know that the strike rate here is (low)... I think it's about game awareness and common sense."

Babar Azam to extend stay in USA

Captain Babar Azam, along with 6 players and 4 officials, has decided not to return to Pakistan with the team.

The national cricket team, which could not qualify for the Super Eight round of the ICC T20 World Cup, will begin their return journey to Pakistan today. The players will reach Pakistan via Dubai on June 19.

According to sources, the captain, along with 6 players and 4 officials, is not returning to Pakistan with the team. They will plan their return to Pakistan after spending holidays in London. Those not returning with the team include Babar Azam, Mohammad Amir, Imad Wasim, Haris Rauf, Shadab Khan, and Azam Khan. All of them will spend time with family and friends, and some are also in talks for league participation in the UK.

On the other hand, foreign coaches Gary Kirsten, Simon, Reed will head to their homes. The Pakistan cricket team has no immediate commitments, so the coaching staff is returning to their countries with PCB’s permission.

The Pakistan team is scheduled to host a two-match Test series against Bangladesh in August. After that, England’s Test team will tour Pakistan in October.