Babar Azam: A Tale of Records and Redemption

Equalling Imran Khan’s Undesired Record

Pakistan‘s cricket captain, Babar Azam, faced a setback on Tuesday, August 22, as he suffered a duck during his return to the One Day International (ODI) circuit. This unfortunate event not only marked a disappointing performance but also saw him equal an undesired record set by the legendary 1992 World Cup-winning captain, Imran Khan.

The clash against Afghanistan in the first ODI of the three-match series at the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Stadium was Babar‘s attempt to make the most of the favorable batting conditions. However, early breakthroughs by Afghanistan derailed Pakistan‘s plans, leading to Babar’s dismissal for a three-ball duck.

While this might seem like a setback, it’s essential to note the context and the challenges Babar has faced during his tenure. Leading a young team and facing top-tier teams has been a learning curve for the young captain.

Battling Undesired Records

The duck recorded in this game marked Babar’s fourth in the ODI format and his second as captain. This unwanted record placed him in the company of former cricket greats such as Imran Khan, Javed Miandad, Azhar Ali, and Younis Khan. This statistic, though not desired, emphasizes the challenges and responsibilities that come with captaincy.

Pakistan Captains with the highest number of ducks in ODIs:

  • Wasim Akram – 8 ducks
  • Inzamam-ul-Haq – 4 ducks
  • Moin Khan – 4 ducks
  • Misbah-ul-Haq – 3 ducks
  • Babar Azam – 4 ducks (equalling the record)

Among Pakistan captains with the highest number of ducks in ODIs, Babar Azam ranks fourth. Topping this list is the legendary Wasim Akram, boasting eight ducks, followed by Inzamam-ul-Haq and Moin Khan, who jointly occupy the second position with four ducks each. Misbah-ul-Haq stands third with three such dismissals. While the record may not be ideal, Babar’s commitment to the team remains unwavering.

Babar Azam: A Captain’s Perspective

Reflecting on the game, Babar Azam remained positive despite the challenges. He acknowledged the crucial contributions of his teammates and commended Haris Rauf‘s pivotal spell. Embracing both victories and defeats as part of the game, Babar emphasized his commitment to giving his best as a batter and captain. His leadership continues to evolve, contributing to the team’s progress.

We lost wickets upfront and then Imam and Iftikhar played a good hand in getting us to a decent total. We just tried to hit the hard length with the ball and build more dot balls in the powerplay. We all know what Shaheen can do with the new ball. The way Haris Rauf bowled, that spell was game-changing. I always try my level best (as a batter and captain), sometimes you win and sometimes you lose, it happens in the game of cricket. We want to stay positive

Babar said after the match

AFG vs PAK 1st ODI

Opting to bat first, Pakistan posted a respectable total of 201 runs in 47.1 overs. Despite Afghanistan’s formidable bowling attack, Babar’s team exhibited resilience and determination. A standout performance by Imam-ul-Haq, who scored an impressive 61 off 94 balls, bolstered Pakistan’s innings. Shadab Khan and Iftikhar Ahmed’s contributions added crucial runs to the board.

Read More:
AFG vs PAK 1st ODI Highlights: PAK Won by 142 runs
AFG vs PAK 1st ODI: Everything You Need to Know

Afghanistan’s Struggle

Afghanistan faced a daunting challenge in chasing the target set by Pakistan. Facing the lethal pace of Haris Rauf, Afghanistan’s batting lineup faltered, and they were bowled out for a mere 59 runs in 19.2 overs. Rauf’s stellar performance, securing five wickets for just 18 runs, proved to be a game-changer. Pakistan rewrote history, recording their biggest win in a One Day International game where they bowled out their opponents. This commanding victory by a margin of 142 runs underlines Pakistan’s dominance on neutral ground.

Setting the Stage for the Asia Cup

In a timely reminder of their capabilities ahead of the 2023 Asia Cup, Babar Azam’s Pakistan began their dress rehearsals in a spectacular fashion. Facing Afghanistan in the first ODI of a three-match series at the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Stadium, Pakistan demonstrated their prowess by overwhelming their opponents. As co-hosts of the upcoming Asia Cup alongside former champions Sri Lanka, this victory serves as a timely reminder to all teams, especially arch-rivals India.


Babar Azam is not just a cricketer; he’s a beacon of hope for millions of Pakistani cricket fans. His batting techniques, leadership skills, and vision for the team make him one of the most influential figures in the cricketing world today. As Pakistan gears up for the upcoming tournaments, all eyes will be on Babar Azam, the captain who leads with passion and precision.