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PCB appoints Babar Azam as Pakistan’s Test captain

LAHORE: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has appointed Babar Azam as Pakistan cricket team’s Test captain after Azhar Ali stepped down from the role on Tuesday.

According to a press statement issued by PCB today, “Babar Azam’s first assignment will be to captain Pakistan in the ICC World Test Championship fixtures against New Zealand, which will be played in Mount Maunganui and Christchurch from 26-30 December and 3-7 January, respectively.”  

PCB Chairman Ehsan Mani confirmed the appointment after a meeting with outgoing captain Azhar Ali, thanking him for stepping up during his stint as Test captain of the team. 

The PCB Chairman said, “I want to thank Azhar Ali for stepping up last year by captaining the side in what was a historic first home Test series in over a decade.

“I believe Azhar still has a lot of cricket left in him and Pakistan cricket can continue to make the best use of his experience and knowledge as specialist top-order batsman moving forward,” he added.

Ehsan Mani said the decision to appoint Babar Azam as skipper was made after his consistent performance and leadership skills as captain of the white-ball formats. 

“As we are looking into the future, it is appropriate that PCB appoint Azam the captain now so that he continues to grow stronger with every match,” he added, wishing the new captain best of luck for the team’s future. 

Commenting on his appointment, Babar Azam said that he feel truly honoured to have been appointed Test captain and join some of the most iconic players who have captained Pakistan.

He further said, “I am ready and prepared to take up the additional responsibility and the thing that gives me additional confidence that I can do the job is the experience that is available to me in the changing room in the shape of the players and support staff”.

“I want to thank Azhar Ali for the way he captained in the last season, which was a difficult one, but I know that he will leave no stone unturned in giving his very best for the team,” he added.