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Babar Azam was blown away by the analytics I showed him, needs help: Dean Jones

Former Australian cricketer believes Pakistan’s limited-overs captain requires some guidance in leading the side

PHOTO COURTESY: PCB

Former Australian cricketer Dean Jones believes the Pakistan limited-overs captain, Babar Azam, would initially require some support in leading the national side.

While coaching Karachi Kings in the now-suspended fifth edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL), Jones got the opportunity to share his ideas with Azam, who is the vice-captain of the franchise.

“I still think he needs a little bit of help with where he wants to go,” said Jones on Sportscreen’s YouTube page. “I have had a few good talks with him about how I prepare for each team and he was a little blown away by the degree of analytics I get into. I gave him some good ideas. Hopefully, he took few of them on board.”

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Jones feels it’s too early to compare Azam with Indian captain Virat Kohli and opener Rohit Sharma. However, the former cricketer also added that the Lahore-born batsman doesn’t have the luxury of a quality batting-lineup like the Indian duo.

“In a way, you are only as good as the guys you are batting with. Apart from Babar, there is no one who has been making runs consistently for Pakistan. Whereas in India, you have Virat, Rohit or someone else putting their hands up and making runs,” he said.

“They are all great players. When Babar Azam is batting, everyone is watching. Same is the case with Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma,” he added.

Jones also commended Babar for his work ethic but still believes that the 25-year-old needs to clear the boundary more often in the shortest format of the game.

“It’s just so good to see a technically perfect player. His work ethic is amazing. He can’t hit enough balls in practice and is a terrific kid to work with,” he said. “The only improvement Babar needs is in his power-hitting.  He needs to hit more fours and sixes in Twenty20 cricket.”