LAHORE-Former Pakistan legendary batsman Mohammad Yousuf on Monday said that Babar Azam’s balance at the batting crease is the main reason behind his success in international cricket.

Mohammad Yousuf said this during the online video session for national men’s and emerging players. Yousuf, who remained backbone of Pakistan batting line-ups in a hugely rewarding international career spanning 13 years, stressed on the importance of balance of a batsman. “It is the balance at the batting crease, which helped Babar Azam succeed in international cricket and make such huge records in batting department.”

He added that a cricketer continues to learn and improve throughout his career. “At one stage, I was struggling badly due to a lack of footwork but the then head coach Bob Woolmer worked hard with me in improving my footwork, which paid rich dividends and I went on to become one of the best batsmen of my era.”

The former Pakistan captain also emphasized on the fitness batsmen. “Fitness is very important factor for any batsman as the more he will fit, the better he will perform and produce consistent performances for his side. It’s my suggestion to the batsmen that they should never compromise on the fitness aspect, if they want to compete with the best in the world.

“For a batsman to succeed mental fitness should complement physical fitness, the present Covid-19 lockdown provides an opportunity to the players to work on improvement on their fitness as they have time on their hands,” he added.

Answering to a query of Test captain Azhar Ali, Yousuf said that discipline was also a key component in a batsman’s game. “In tough situations, batsmen should not go in their shell, instead it’s the best time for them to learn from their mistakes and overcome a peculiar situation and a bad patch of lack of form.”

To another query from Mohammad Hafeez, he replied that other than his own technique, a batsman also needs to focus on a bowler’s strength and give him due respect. “If a batsman becomes a good reader of different bowlers, it also helps him a lot to play in a better and authoritative way. So focus and better reading of bowlers play key role in making any play a great batsman.”

The former cricketer also stressed on the importance of strike rotation for batsmen. “Taking singles and doubles helps in overcoming a pressure situation while batting. The same batting technique is needed in all three formats of the game. See the examples of Saeed Anwar and Inzamam-ul-Haq, who had the game to score in all conditions and formats of the game.”

“It is a great honour for me that I have represented Pakistan along with some of the biggest stars of the game including the likes of present bowling coach and legendary bowler Waqar Younis. I feel proud when I recall my past, my performances and my fellow players, who had given their entire lives to cricket and also win good name and fame for them as well as for the country,” Yousuf concluded.