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Silver Lining on the Horizon | Pakistan Tour of South Africa

Babar Azam in action for Pakistan
Babar Azam in action for Pakistan
©REUTERS
 

The just concluded series of 3 ODIs and 4 T20s between South Africa and Pakistan is an effort from the touring side to shift from Snake and Ladder game to thoughtful game of Chess.

Surely a silver lining of patience and planning witnessed during the series. The details of the series are already known to the followers of this great game of cricket both in South Africa and Pakistan and needs no mention.

But what I can describe briefly is that the whole series revolved around five players namely Babar Azam, Fakhar Zaman and Mohammad Rizwan from Pakistan and Janeman Malan and Aiden Markram from South Africa. All these players were at their best?and on the front foot leaving behind bowlers on the back seat with only empty stadiums as witness to their glorious batting.

The record opening stand of 197 between Rizwan and Babar and their consistency is a good omen for Pakistan for the upcoming T20 World Cup in India but they are still in the grey area for the middle order as much trumpeted Asif Ali and Haider Ali could not come up to the desired international standards and failed to deliver.

Despite losing both ODI and T20 series, I must give full credit to South Africa management for testing their bench strength to find new blood for their future team and definitely the youngsters fought valiantly to prove their point.

As we all know that besides the series result, the cricket lovers all over the world, were involved in the interesting dual between Virat Kohli and Babar Azam for being the number one batsman of the world. Though the ICC point ratings determines the best but along with we must also compare the technique. In this regard the old stalwarts are the best judge and one of them Sachin Tendulkar has spoken in favour of Babar.

Here in my mind comes the famous horse dual and comparison of greatness between Frankel of England and Secretariat of USA. Both these horses were the heroes of Englishmen and Americans and were their idols and national pride. The media and horse racing lovers went crazy on both sides and till now nobody could separate them for being world number one.

Similarly this dual of Kohli and Babar will remain hot topic in the cricket world in coming years but one never knows the unknown as the cricket ratings depends on the form of each batsman. However considering the technique, I am all for Babar.

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