Babar Azam opens up on Pakistan's T20 World Cup win against India, says 'it was our best moment of the year'
Pakistan skipper Babar Azam has hailed his side's record win against India in the recent T20 World Cup as the most memorable moment of the year. In the much-anticipated Super 12 fixture of the T20 showpiece event, Pakistan romped to a 10-wicket win over arch-rivals India, ending their World Cup drought against the Men in Blue.
Pakistan pacer Shaheen Afridi was the star of the show, taking three for 31 from his four overs. Despite a valiant 57 from captain Virat Kohli, the Indians were not able to notch up an intimidating total on the scoreboard. Chasing 152 for victory, skipper Babar (68) and his ally Mohammad Rizwan (79) steered their team home with 13 deliveries to spare.
"I can't explain that moment. We were not thinking about the past record, trying to stay in the present. The way we started and finished had a different feel and buzz to it.. and the response from fans was amazing too. We hadn't registered a win (against India) in the World Cups and Allah helped us change that. It was a team effort and it was our best moment of the year. We had belief… there was no overconfidence," said Babar in a PCB Podcast episode on YouTube.
The Men in Green reached the semi-finals of the T20 World Cup after topping Group B. However, their impressive journey came to an end with a defeat to eventual champions Australia in the semis. Babar described it as a heartbreaking moment for Pakistan.
"We had put in the effort... we had dominated the World Cup. But unfortunately, we couldn't win that match. We made mistakes as a team but we need to learn from it and deliver a better performance next time," said Babar, who finishes with the year with 939 runs from 29 T20 Internationals.
“Doesn't matter how you start when you finish well. We finished the year on an outstanding note. We played some positive cricket throughout the year and tried to leave an impact. We've had different Man of the Match contenders for every match. Unfortunately, we bowed out of T20 World Cup but we did learn from that defeat. We have had discussions on the mistakes and will try to improve day by day.
"Talking about performances, Rizwan and Shaheen were brilliant. Hasan too. Youngsters like Abdullah, Wasim and Dhani have been impressive too. It's a plus point for us and hopefully, we carry on the momentum. We had assigned roles to players and that led to better performances. I had the belief that we had match-winners in our team and the boys proved that. Thanks to the fans too and we hope to get a similar kind of support next year," said the 27-year-old batter.