World Cup 2023

Ambitious Babar Sets High Sights for Pakistan at the World Cup 2023

While Pakistan’s recent Asia Cup 2023 journey ended on a challenging note with a last-place finish in the Super Four stage, Babar Azam the Pakistani Captain is determined to emphasize their prior status as the top-ranked ODI team in the world. Looking ahead to the upcoming ODI World Cup, he firmly states that their objective is not merely making it to the top four but surpassing that milestone.

In a pre-departure press conference, Babar expressed, “The top four is a modest target for us. We aspire to emerge as champions World cup 2023. Given our continuous play schedule, we opted to provide our players with a break to rejuvenate and rekindle their hunger for victory. The drive to win fuels exceptional performance.”

He continued by reflecting on the Asia Cup, saying, “Before the last two games in the Asia Cup, we were performing admirably with the same squad. Despite falling short of our potential, we’ve taken valuable lessons from our mistakes, both individually and as a team. We’ve held comprehensive discussions on our errors with the support staff and moved past them. The Asia Cup was a different tournament, and the World Cup is an entirely distinct challenge.”

In the lead-up to the World Cup, Pakistan has faced numerous on-field and off-field challenges. After a humbling loss to India in the Asia Cup, injuries to key players like Naseem Shah and Haris Rauf, along with Shadab Khan’s loss of form, necessitated adjustments to their squad.

Off the field, visa-related issues delayed their training camp in Dubai, and ongoing negotiations for new central contracts have created a lingering concern. Despite these distractions, Babar assured, “We do our best to shield ourselves from external distractions and maintain unwavering focus. I handle as many issues as possible outside the dressing room. Visas are now sorted, so we’re ready to go. Regarding contracts, negotiations are ongoing, and we’re optimistic about a favorable outcome, as the PCB genuinely looks out for our interests.”

He also emphasized the unity within the team, saying, “There is no discord in the dressing room. Media discussions may amplify post-loss discussions, but the entire team operates like a family, marked by love and respect.”

Pakistan’s highly anticipated clash against India on October 14 in Ahmedabad remains a significant topic of discussion. Despite Babar’s earlier attempt to downplay the game’s significance within the tournament, he couldn’t hide his excitement about playing in front of a potentially record-breaking crowd.

“I am excited to play in Ahmedabad as it will be jam-packed,” Babar said. “I will strive to perform to the best of my abilities. Participating in a major tournament is always an exciting opportunity. It’s a chance to become a hero because every World Cup performance boosts your confidence in a unique way. Everyone brings their A-game to the World Cup, so performing there is a completely different experience. Performance flourishes when you don’t succumb to pressure.”

However, Babar swiftly redirected his focus, stating, “I am not preoccupied with personal achievements. My primary goal is to contribute to the team’s success.”

With that, he signed off, ready to lead his team into uncharted territory in India, eager to play in Ahmedabad not just once but twice, showcasing his unwavering determination and leadership.

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