KARACHI          -       Babar Azam has made it to the news for plenty of significant things of late. The constant comparison with Virat Kohli was followed by receiving the captaincy for Pakistan’s ODI outfit. Despite being seen as someone, who can improve Pakistan’s inconsistent run in the format, his first address to the media has received plenty of criticism. The likes of Shoaib Akhtar and Rashid Latif condemned Babar Azam for not discussing real issues within the team and his vision as a captain.

It all started when former cricketer Tanvir Ahmed asked Babar to improve his English language skills for adequately addressing the media when travelling media overseas. Alongside talking on the same, the newly-appointed skipper weighed on the comparison between him and Virat Kohli. The same did not go well with former Pakistan keeper-batsman Rashid Latif, who believes he should speak about what his goals are with the side instead.

Latif believes that such press conferences are for the captains to reveal their long-term and short-term goals. He further remarked that the fact Babar Azam spoke about irrelevant issues like language barriers and Kohli comparison is a testament that his approach and mindset is jittery.

“When captain is sitting in a press conference, he gives insight about his vision but this was clearly lacking,” Latif said and added: “Our captain is giving headlines about language barrier and things we already know, like comparison with Virat Kohli. Babar should have made a strong statement rather than just following the script given to him. You have already showcased that your mental attitude and approach is not up to the mark.”

In one of the interviews, the 25-year old expressed his will to be a leader like Imran Khan. Imran Khan, who is presently the Prime Minister of Pakistan, was not only of the greatest captains but also one of the best all-rounders. Imran guided Pakistan to the 1992 World Cup trophy, their only 50-over World Cup win to date. Hence, inspired by his aggressiveness, Babar Azam, who succeeded Sarfraz Ahmed in the role, aims to pick a leaf out of that book as a captain.

To add to the above comments by Rashid Latif, Shoaib Akhtar also echoed his opinions that hardly anyone wants to listen to things, which has been known for a decade. The Rawalpindi Express mentioned that if Babar Azam wants to be like Imran Khan, it also has to be in terms of being a resourceful captain, a spearhead, and a sound personality alongside sharp communication skills. It must not only be about playing good cricket.

“Babar needs to take a leaf out of PM Imran’s book with regards to personality as well. Please don’t speak about things which we already know from the past 10 years. We won’t buy this argument,” Akhtar said and added: “Babar has to sharpen up his communication skills, his personality, ability to lead from the front, fitness level etc. I think he has a lot to prove.”