Babar Azam has been appointed as Pakistan’s new Test skipper, making him the country’s across-formats captain.
Babar replaces Azhar Ali, who last captained Pakistan against England this summer. PCB Chairman Ehsan Mani confirmed the appointment following a meeting with Azhar on Tuesday (November 10). His first assignment will be leading Pakistan in the ICC World Test Championship games against New Zealand, which will be played in Mount Maunganui and Christchurch from December 26-30 and January 3-7 respectively.
“Babar Azam was identified at a very young age as a future leader and as part of his progression and development, he was appointed white-ball captain last year,” Mani said. “With his consistent performance and leadership skills, he has demonstrated that he is ready to take on the additional responsibilities of a captain.
“As we are looking into the future, it is appropriate that we appoint him the captain now so that he continues to grow stronger with every match. I wish Babar all the best and remain optimistic that he will help Pakistan cricket make an upward movement across all formats not only through his performance but also with his positive attitude and result-oriented approach.
“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 a specialist top-order batsman moving forward.”
After his appointment, Babar said he’s prepared to take up the additional responsibility. “I feel truly honoured to have been appointed Test captain and join some of the most iconic players who have captained Pakistan in the purest format of the game. I can now say with conviction that dreams can come true only if you chase them with honesty, dedication and commitment.
“I am ready and prepared to take up the additional responsibility and the fact which gives me additional confidence is 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 the team in the last season, which was a difficult one, but I know that he will leave no stone unturned in giving his very best to the team.”