Babar Has Ability to Become One of the Greats: Faf du Plessis

ISLAMABAD, Nov 15 (APP): South Africa cricketer Faf du Plessis believes that prolific batsman Babar Azam has the ability to become one of the greats of the game, saying the Pakistani Skipper has surprised with his Twenty20 credentials.

The former Proteas skipper admitted that Babar has surprised a lot of people with his T20 credentials and while considering him similar to Indian star batsman Virat Kohli. “I do see similarity between Kohli and Babar. They are extremely high quality players. Babar, over the last year or so, has taken another step towards becoming one of the greats of the game so he has got an exciting future. I think he surprised a lot of people with his T20 cricket. People would have originally boxed him as a guy that hasn’t got a lot of power but certainly of late his T20 game has been remarkable,” quoted him as saying. The 36-year-old also recalled his tours of Pakistan with the World XI, a side which he captained, in 2017 and the under-19 team. “The last time I was here was for the World XI game which was really great to be a part of. The biggest thing for me was seeing the fans and how much it meant to them that cricket was being played in Pakistan again. It was a great part of my journey as a cricketer. The under-19 tour, I think it was 15 years ago or something like that. Back then we were also at the National Stadium in Karachi and to see the stadium after a really long time feels surreal,” he said.

The right-handed batsman also praised the standard of cricket in the Pakistan Super League (PSL). “I have followed the league in South Africa on TV and I have talked to a lot players who have played in the league who are of the opinion that the standard of the league is really high and especially the fast-bowling. It’s good to be finally coming over and play some cricket in the PSL,” he said.

He also opened up on playing cricket without fans in the stadium amid COVID-19 pandemic. “I don’t think so but it feels different because the energy you draw from the crowd is not there but once you get into the battle with the opposition it feels like normal business. So it’s almost the same but not quiet,” he said. Du Plessis was also optimistic about touring Pakistan with the national side, early next year. “That’s (South Africa tour of Pakistan) on the cards at the moment. I think the time frame is around February and CSA is working with the PCB hand in hand to get that tour over the line but like I said I have been here a few times and we would gladly play our part in getting cricket back to Pakistan,” he said.

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