Babar Azam says not taking Zimbabwe lightly in Tests

Abdul Mohi Shah
Babar Azam says not taking Zimbabwe lightly in Tests / Photo: File 

Pakistan captain Babar Azan on Wednesday said that they consider Zimbabwe a serious opponent and will not take them lightly for the two-match Test series starting today.

Talking to media virtually in Harare, the 26-year-old said that it was always a dangerous option to take your opponents lightly.

“Zimbabwe are playing at home and know their conditions better than us,” he said. “We are in no mood to take them lightly for the Test series. What is important for us is to go into the series with the best available combination.”

Babar added that the team will look forward to a minimum change in the winning combination that defeated South Africa 2-0 at home in February this year.

“We are in no mood to make any unnecessary changes in the team,” he said. “We are planning to have one odd change in the team for the Test series opener and more interested in retaining the winning combination.”

Given the absence of Yasir Shah in the Test squad, the one odd change Babar talked about could mean a debut for either the leg-spinner Zahid Mehmood or off-spinner Sajjid Khan.

The two countries will play red-ball cricket against each other after almost an eight-year break. Zimbabwe pulled a big surprise last time both countries were seen playing the Test series in 2013, winning the opening Test and then conceding the second to draw it 1-1. The venue was the same where the Test series now will be held.

Babar, however, has pinned high hopes on his team members.

“We have defeated South Africa at home convincingly a few months back. Since our Test squad gives a formidable look, I hope they would continue the winning momentum.

Pakistan Squad: Abid Ali, Imran Butt, Azhar Ali, Babar Azam (captain), Fawad Alam, Mohammad Rizwan, Faheem Ashraf, Hasan Ali, Nauman Ali, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Zahid Mehmood and Sajjid Khan

Read: Zimbabwe Tests good opportunity for backup spinners: Misbah-ul-Haq

Pak vs Zim: Babar Azam says not taking Zimbabwe lightly in Tests