Protocols in New Zealand, England are completely opposite: Babar Azam

Pakistan captain is eager to get back out on the field

Protocols in New Zealand, England are completely opposite: Babar Azam PHOTO COURTESY: PCB

Pakistan all-format captain Babar Azam has opened up on the Men in Green’s tour of New Zealand, where the entire squad, based in Christchurch, is currently in managed isolation.

10 Pakistan players, so far, have tested positive for Covid-19 since their arrival in New Zealand.

Azam believes that the protocols in New Zealand are completely different as compared to England, where Pakistan toured recently amid the pandemic.

“Here [New Zealand] the situation is completely different from England tour. The protocols are completely opposite,” said Azam. “We are missing practice but as soon as that starts everything else will subside as our focus will only be on cricket. Every second person [in the squad] is eager to get back to playing cricket.”

The Lahore-born also highlighted the role played by senior players in ensuring the “team bonding” is not affected.

“Our squad is not a small one and has around 50 members. Handling them is also a major task and the senior players, in each group, are playing a key role in this regard,” he said.

ALSO READ: Two more members of Pakistan squad confirmed with Covid-19 in New Zealand

The 26-year-old also stressed on the importance of remaining steadfast in these difficult times.

“Playing for Pakistan is honour for everyone and we are not worried by the small problems that come along the way as these are part and parcel of everyone’s life. As a professional, we should know how to tackle these issues,” he said. “But the plus point is that we are gelled as team and still backing each other.”

Pakistan’s senior side and Shaheens will move to Queenstown on December 8 but every player will need the local health ministry's approval before travelling. Also, both squads will stay in separate hotels.