The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) is likely to continue with Sarafaraz Ahmed as captain of the Twenty20 International (T20I) side for the series against Australia, despite the humiliating three-nil whitewash at the hands of a depleted Sri Lanka side on home soil.
According to sources, the PCB understands that the wicketkeeper-batsman is under pressure but it is not convinced, yet, that top-order batsman Babar Azam is mentally ready to take over the role. The latter was only able to score 43 runs, in three innings, during the T20I series against Sri Lanka, bearing in mind that he was named as the vice-captain of the side.
Sarfaraz’s batting form is also a cause of concern for the board as he has not been able to consistently notch up good numbers with the bat, in the recent past. He registered scores of 24, 26 and 17, respectively, during the recently concluded T20I series against the Islanders without much impact.
Pakistan’s head coach-cum-chief selector, Misbahul Haq, wants PCB to name captain for a long period of time rather than on a series-by-series basis. But the team and Sarfaraz’s individual performance is preventing the board from taking this step. If Pakistan team fails to improve under Sarfaraz’s captaincy, during Australia T20Is starting on November 3, PCB is likely to hand over the reins to Babar Azam for Bangladesh series.
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