Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Pakistan captain Babar Azam said when he steps on the field, friendship goes out the window as “you’re there for Pakistan and Pakistan should come first”.
Azam noted that he wants the national team to be as successful as possible and in order to do that, he has to separate business and pleasure.
Off the field, the 26-year-old has no problems showing his friendly side, but during a game, his competitive nature and desire to win takes over.
“When you’re [on] the ground, you’re there for Pakistan and Pakistan should come first, [we are not] friends there. All your relations with individuals should be kept out of the ground,” Azam told former Pakistan captain Ramiz Raja on the PCB’s official YouTube channel as quoted by Cricket Pakistan.
Azam missed all the matches during the tour of New Zealand with a fractured right thumb, but he has made a full recovery and will return for the upcoming series against South Africa.
Pakistan’s series against South Africa, which will consist of two Tests and three T20 Internationals, will start on Tuesday and conclude on February 14.
Pakistan’s 17-man squad for the first Test: Abid Ali, Imran Butt, Azhar Ali, Babar Azam (captain), Fawad Alam, Saud Shakeel, Faheem Ashraf, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan (wicketkeeper), Sarfaraz Ahmed (wicketkeeper), Nauman Ali, Sajid Khan, Yasir Shah, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Tabish Khan