Pakistan vs New Zealand: Babar Azam Returns as Captain in T20I Series Opener

Pakistan vs New Zealand: Babar Azam Returns as Captain in T20I Series Opener

Pakistan and New Zealand will clash in the first T20I of a five-match series at the Pindi Cricket Stadium on Thursday, April 18. The series marks the return of Babar Azam as captain after the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) reversed its decision to appoint Shaheen Shah Afridi as skipper.

Mohammad Amir and Imad Wasim, who recently came out of retirement, will also make their international comebacks in this series. New Zealand, on the other hand, has arrived in Pakistan with an understrength squad due to the Indian Premier League (IPL).

The Black Caps are missing nine top players, including skipper Kane Williamson, who are currently playing in the IPL. Stand-in captain Michael Bracewell believes this is an opportunity for younger players to showcase their talent.

Mohammad Amir Reverses Retirement, Available for T20 World Cup

Mohammad Amir Reverses Retirement, Available for T20 World Cup

Mohammad Amir, the enigmatic Pakistani fast bowler, has made a sensational U-turn on his international retirement, declaring his availability for selection for the upcoming T20 World Cup. Amir’s last appearance for Pakistan was in a T20I against England in 2020, after which he abruptly announced his retirement from international cricket, citing mental torture.

However, in a recent social media post, the 31-year-old Amir expressed his renewed desire to represent his country. “I still dream to play for Pakistan!” he wrote. “After positive discussions with the PCB, I feel that I am needed and can still contribute to the team. I am available to be considered for the upcoming T20 World Cup.”

Amir’s decision comes after a successful stint in the 2024 Pakistan Super League (PSL), where he claimed 10 wickets in nine games for the Quetta Gladiators. His impressive performances have reignited hopes that he can still be a valuable asset to the Pakistani team.

Amir’s announcement follows a similar move by all-rounder Imad Wasim, who also reversed his retirement to make himself available for the T20 World Cup. The return of these experienced players is a major boost for Pakistan, who will be looking to make a strong impact in the tournament.

Amir’s return to international cricket is a testament to his resilience and determination. Despite the challenges he has faced, he remains committed to representing his country and contributing to its success. His experience and skill will be invaluable to Pakistan as they aim to lift the T20 World Cup trophy for the second time.

Mohammad Amir's Heated Exchange with Fan Overshadows Quetta Gladiators' PSL Playoff Berth

Mohammad Amir’s Heated Exchange with Fan Overshadows Quetta Gladiators’ PSL Playoff Berth

Mohammad Amir’s Heated Exchange with Fan Overshadows Quetta Gladiators’ PSL Playoff Berth

Former Pakistan fast bowler Mohammad Amir found himself embroiled in a heated verbal exchange with a fan during the Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2024 match between Quetta Gladiators and Lahore Qalandars on Sunday.

As Amir made his way to the field, a section of the crowd began chanting “fixer fixer,” a reference to his involvement in a spot-fixing scandal in 2010. The chants clearly irked Amir, who responded angrily.

“Ghar se yehi seekh ke aate ho” (Is this what you learn at your home?), Amir retorted.

The incident brought back memories of Amir’s promising young career being derailed by the spot-fixing scandal. At the age of 18, Amir, along with his new-ball partner Mohammad Asif and Pakistan captain Salman Butt, faced five-year bans from cricket and received jail sentences.

Despite the unpleasant incident, Amir was elated as Quetta Gladiators secured a spot in the playoffs during the ongoing ninth season of the PSL. The Gladiators earned their playoff berth with a six-wicket victory over Lahore Qalandars, courtesy of a last-ball six by Wasim Jr.

Amir’s performance on the field has been impressive throughout the tournament, and he has played a key role in Quetta Gladiators’ success. However, the heated exchange with the fan serves as a reminder of the challenges that Amir has faced in his career and the lingering stigma associated with his past.

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