Image taken by: Bimal Mirwani
Peshawar Zalmi head coach Daren Sammy has urged Pakistan captain Babar Azam to be brave as he has huge responsibility on his shoulders.
The former West Indies all-rounder noted that if Azam leads by example, the rest of the team will follow in his footsteps as they will want to be seen supporting their captain.
In the recent series against New Zealand, Azam made 226 runs in the two-Test series, which included a top score of 161, at an average of 56.50.
The 28-year-old followed that up with 149 runs in three ODIs, which included two half-centuries, at an average of 49.66.
With the Test series ending 0-0 and New Zealand winning the ODI series 2-1, there have been rumours of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) wanting to implement a split captaincy, which would see Azam no longer lead the national team in all three formats of the game.
One of the names that has popped up to replace him in ODIs is top order batsman Shan Masood.
Despite all this, Sammy called on Azam to remain fearless and keep his head up.
“Babar Azam needs to be brave, because [the] ship will follow the captain,” he told Samaa TV as quoted by Cricwick.
Sammy and Azam will work closely together in the upcoming edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) as Azam was traded to the Zalmi from the Karachi Kings for Pakistan big-hitter Haider Ali and all-rounder Shoaib Malik.
PSL 8 is scheduled to be held from February 13 to March 19 in Karachi, Lahore, Multan, Rawalpindi and Quetta.
Peshawar Zalmi Squad for PSL 8: Babar Azam, Rovman Powell, Bhanuka Rajapaksa (Sri Lanka), Mujeeb Ur Rehman, Sherfane Rutherford, Wahab Riaz, Arshad Iqbal, Danish Aziz, Mohammad Haris, Aamer Jamal, Tom Kohler-Cadmore, Saim Ayub, Salman Irshad, Usman Qadir, Haseebullah Khan, Sufyan Muqeem and James Neesham