Babar Azam ignores Jasprit Bumrah in bold choice, chooses Naseem Shah for final over gamble | Crickit

Babar Azam ignores Jasprit Bumrah in bold choice, chooses Naseem Shah for final over gamble

Apr 08, 2024 01:32 PM IST

Babar Azam ingored Jasprit Bumrah and boldly selected Naseem Shah for a final over situation.

Considered to be among the greatest bowlers in cricket history, Jasprit Bumrah has been extremely decisive for Team India in the global stage. Currently participating in IPL 2024, the pacer is leading Mumbai Indians' pace battery.

Babar Azam ignored Jasprit Bumrah for Naseem Shah.
Babar Azam ignored Jasprit Bumrah for Naseem Shah.

During the 2023 ODI World Cup last year, Bumrah took 20 wickets in 11 matches and was India's second-highest wicket taker. He was the tournament's fourth-highest wicket taker, with Mohammed Shami claiming pole position with 24 dismissals.

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Bumrah would be any captain's go-to pick in the final over of a run chase, but Pakistan captain Babar Azam revealed that he prefers another pacer. On a podcast, Babar was asked, "One over, T20 match, you have to win the match, you have two options to defend 10 runs, whom will you give the last over, Naseem Shah or Jasprit Bumrah?"

Without any hesitation, he replied, "Naseem Shah."

Babar took back captaincy from Shaheen Shah Afridi and will be leading Pakistan in this year's T20 World Cup. Meanwhile, Naseem has been a vital cog in Babar's plans in his first stint as skipper. In 17 Tests, Naseem took 51 wickets, 32 in 14 ODIs and 15 dismissals in 19 T20Is.

Meanwhile, Bumrah has taken 159 wickets in 36 Tests, 149 in 89 ODIs and 74 dismissals in 62 T20Is.

Praising Naseem, Babar added, "Naseem Shah. Firstly, I felt so happy for Naseem, for the way he returned to cricket after injury and the way he recovered. His skills are exceptional. We don’t often see talent like this in Pakistan."

"There are others too, like Shaheen Shah Afridi. Shaheen is in a class of his own. but Naseem is on a similar trajectory, gaining valuable experience," he also added.

Babar's return as Pakistan captain saw plenty of controversy. He replaced Shaheen and PCB put up a statement where the quotes attributed to the bowler were fake. According to ESPNcricinfo, he was on the verge of making a statement regarding it, but an emergency meeting with PCB prevented such a decision.

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