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LAHORE: Former wicketkeeper-batsman Rashid Latif has opined that Pakistan national team captain Babar Azam’s injury could be a blessing in disguise, as it provides an opportunity to young players like Haider Ali and Abdullah Shafique to prove their mettle.
In a video posted on his YouTube Channel, Rashid Latif said, “Babar Azam is a big loss. However, it can be a blessing in disguise as well. When sometimes a big player gets injured, it could lead to a new player being discovered.”
“If Abdullah Shafique and Haider Ali opens the innings in Babar’s absence, then they might avail this opportunity and Pakistan might get a new star,” the former cricketer added.
Babar Azam has been ruled out of New Zealand T20Is after suffering a fracture in his right thumb during Sunday morning’s practice session. The Lahore-born batsman will be unable to attend nets for, at least, 12 days.
Rashid Latif further said, “I hope they don’t force Mohammad Rizwan or Sarfaraz Ahmed to open the innings. Let the youngsters open the inning, and if they are able to handle that, then they will eventually become good players.”
Shadab Khan is set to lead Pakistan for the T20Is against New Zealand in Babar’s absence. However, a decision on his participation in the Auckland T20I will be made closer to the match.
In this regard, Rashid Latif said, “If Shadab is not fit in time then Imad Wasim could lead Pakistan in T20s as he recently led in PSL. If we win the T20I series and then suffer defeat in Test series, then it will raise a big question mark on Pakistan’s white-ball captaincy.”