Mohammad Hafeez strongly questions Babar Azam's captaincy reinstatement

Hafeez criticized the decision, labeling it as popular but ultimately harmful to the team's dynamics

Mohammad Hafeez strongly questions Babar Azam's captaincy reinstatement PHOTO: FILE

Former Pakistan cricketer Mohammad Hafeez has raised concerns over the decision-making process regarding the captaincy of the national cricket team, particularly highlighting the reinstatement of Babar Azam as white-ball captain after a brief hiatus.

In an exclusive interview with Cricket Pakistan, Hafeez expressed his reservations, questioning the rationale behind removing Babar Azam from the captaincy only to reinstate him within a short span. He criticized such decisions, labeling them as popular but ultimately harmful to the team's dynamics.

"If the decision was made to remove Babar from captaincy and appoint someone else as captain, then in two months, what wrong did he [Shaheen] do and what right did he [Babar] do to come back again? I think decisions like these are taken as a popular decision, it is harmful, not beneficial. And that's why within the team, some groups have been formed due to this decision. It is unfortunate that seeds have been sown to create issues within the team," Hafeez said.

While acknowledging the possibility of improvement if Babar learns from past mistakes and demonstrates better decision-making, Hafeez raised doubts about the selection process for the upcoming series against New Zealand.

"I understand that if Babar has learned from his mistakes and if he makes better decisions now and does all the things he didn't do before, then things might get better. But the selection for this [New Zealand] series will give you an idea that the same process has started again. For a weak New Zealand, where 12 to 13 main players are not available, for that, we have selected every player who was perhaps sitting at home and called him to come and play for Pakistan. So, I think this is a weak decision regarding this series," he further added.

It is worth noting that Pakistan will play a five-match T20I series against New Zealand, starting from April 18. The series serves as a crucial phase for both teams to fine-tune their squads and finalize their player selections for the upcoming T20 World Cup 2024 scheduled to take place in the USA and West Indies.