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Mohammad Amir tears into Babar Azam’s captaincy at World Cup 2023

Mohammad Amir strongly believes that blaming the captain holds more weight than faulting the system

Mohammad Amir tears into Babar Azam’s captaincy at World Cup 2023 PHOTO: AFP

Pakistan's early exit from the 2023 ODI World Cup has sparked debates over the team's leadership, strategy, and the overall system.

Former pacer Mohammad Amir strongly believes that blaming the captain holds more weight than faulting the system. 

While talking on a local news channel, Amir pointed out that the system has previously delivered victories for Pakistan, referencing successes in past World Cups. 

“What is the system? It is not a wall. Five and six people have been given responsibility to run the Pakistan cricket. A captain is also one of them. In 1992 under Imran Khan, we won the World Cup, the system was same. In 1999 our team was a world beater, who reached the finals. We won the 2009 T20 World Cup with the same system, we won the 2017 Champions Trophy under same system,” Amir said.

Amir emphasized the role of the captain and highlighted the need for a change in mindset, suggesting that it's the captain's approach, not the system, that dictates success.

“Babar is captain for past four years. He has built his team on his own. Buttler is not part of our system, then why did England played so badly? Does the system in England also need a makeover? After 2015 debacle, Morgan said I want to play this brand of cricket, I want these 25 players," he further added.

The focal point of Amir's argument revolved around the recent choices made by Babar Azam including the exclusion of Abrar Ahmad and the decision to bench Fakhar after the first match.

"System remained the same, it is the captain, who changed his mindset. As long as captain’s mindset will not change, system can do nothing. Was it the system, who told him not to play Abrar Ahmad, or bench Fakhar after first match," Amir said.

Drawing comparisons, Amir referenced the Indian cricket system under MS Dhoni, stating that despite critiques, Dhoni's leadership didn’t overhaul the system but focused on player selection and team development.

“We say Dhoni changed India’s cricket, but he never changed the system. People kept saying that for how long will he keep giving Jadeja and Ashwin chances. And now we say Jadeja is World’s best all-rounder. MS Dhoni has given them the team," he concluded.

While acknowledging that the system in any cricketing setup isn't immune to criticism, Amir suggests that the captain's mindset and choices play a more significant role in a team's success than the overarching system.