The warm-up game between Afghanistan and Pakistan once again cast the Men in Green’s fragile batting lineup under the scanner. Only Babar Azam managed to stand solid as a rock against the barrage of quality spin bowling from the Afghan side, as batsmen fell like skittles around him.
Batting unperturbed and playing the role of the accumulator in style, Babar exhibited exquisite stroke play to lead his team to some semblance of a fighting total. Although criticized for his low strike rate, Babar batted far quickly than his teammates as he struck a 108-ball 112.
The 24-year-old smashed 10 boundaries and 2 sixes in his magnificent knock, skillfully nitpicking the tiniest of gaps during his innings. Loaded with confidence and a heap of runs under his belt from the fruitful outing in the recently concluded England series, Babar will be the key to Pakistan’s chances in the World Cup.