Skipper Babar Azam explained the thinking behind Pakistan’s shock declaration late on day five of the Karachi Test on Friday against New Zealand.
Pakistan declared late on day five with just about 15 overs of play left, setting New Zealand a target of 138. The shock declaration opened up the Test match with the visitors starting off all guns blazing to chase the target down.
However, the play had to be called off early with bad light intervening in the eighth over. While Pakistan could only pick up one wicket before the Test ended in a draw, Babar said they wanted to take a “chance”.
Saud Shakeel was in the middle with a half-century and was a bit taken aback by the skipper’s shock call.
“We said we’d go after a result,” Babar said after the match.
“We took a chance, you never know. It’s cricket. Anything can happen. Saud and [Mohammad] Wasim Junior’s partnership was vital for us because it brought us into the game. That put the idea in my head that we could declare. You all will have enjoyed it as well, and it surprised everyone. It was in our mind we’d take a chance because anything can happen,” added Babar Azam.
Pakistan couldn’t get the early cluster of wickets they sought upon making the call. New Zealand, however, took the bait to make some quick runs and threatened to chase the target down before poor light interrupted play.
“At times you have to take brave decisions and take chances. As a team and captain, I try and do that. You plan for a result, even if you can’t guarantee it,” Babar said.
Pakistan ended the year with zero wins in home Tests, avoiding a fifth straight loss at home in Karachi, but the skipper acknowledged New Zealand for dominating the Test.
“It’s not that we need to play different cricket. We need to take things session by session and day by day. We need to be positive and play with aggression. We’re working on it. Everyone has a different game and mindset. We need to credit New Zealand with the way they played and dominated, ” Babar said. (ANI)
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