Babar Azam still hopes for India-Pak clash in WC semis

Kolkata, Nov 10 (UNI) Captain Babar Azam believes that Pakistan can still set up a semifinal clash with India.

To qualify for the semifinal, Pakistan need to beat England by 287 runs, an herculean task that goes without saying.

Asked if Pakistan can achieve this task, Babar said, “It’s in our mind and we will try to do it. We will try to execute our plans and how we will go tomorrow and how we will achieve the target.”

“We can’t just go in and start firing blindly – we want that but with proper planning, how we want to play the first 10 overs, then the next 20 – how we have to achieve that target.

“There are a lot of things in this, like partnership, which player will stay on the pitch for how long. If you ask me, I would say if Fakhar is in the match for 20 or 30 overs, we can achieve that. Then follow up with Rizwan, Iftikhar. We can do this and we have planned for this,” he told reporters on the eve of the match here.

With regards to relinquishing his captaincy and playing a role as Virat Kohli to prolong his career, Babar said he has been captaining his team for the last three years and he never felt this way.

He said he is also not under pressure even though he has not been performing in this World Cup.

“It’s just because I have not performed the way I should have in the World Cup, that’s why people are saying that I am under pressure. I am under no pressure. I have been doing this for the last 2.5 or 3 years. I was the one who was performing and I was the one who was the captain. I was applying the same thing,” he said.

“It depends how you take such things. Everyone has their own point of view, their own way of thinking. Everyone is saying something different. He should be like this, or like that. If someone has to give me advice, everyone has my number. It is easy to give advice on TV. If you want to give me some advice, you can message me.

I don’t think I was under any pressure or felt any different because of this. I try to give my best in the field during the fielding. During batting, I think about how I should make runs and make the team win,” Pakistan captain said.

Asked if understood some decisions were being made that affected the team’s performance, Babar said he did not have any idea about them.

“The decisions we make here, regarding selections of players – are the decisions of the coaches and the captain. We go with the best combination of conditions and situations. Sometimes we have succeeded and sometimes we haven’t,” he said.

“About the captaincy – as I said, once we go back to Pakistan or after this match, we will see what happens. But right now, I am not focusing on this, my focus is on the next match,” he said.

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