Pakistan captain Babar Azam opened up and revealed the reason for his side not playing aggressively against Canada during their T20 World Cup 2024 clash yesterday. Although Pakistan won the game by seven wickets, questions lingered about why Pakistan did not chase the target more quickly to boost their Net Run Rate (NRR).

Chasing a modest target of 107, Pakistan took 17.3 overs to secure the win. However, to improve their NRR and edge out the USA for a spot in the Super 8s, they needed to finish the chase in 13.5 overs.

With one game left, Pakistan must win convincingly against Ireland and hope the USA loses their next matches for a better NRR to advance.

Babar Azam’s Justification

In the post-match press conference, Babar explained the cautious approach. “Good for us, we needed this win. We started well with the bowling, in the first six overs, we knew we had to be up to the mark,” said the Pakistan captain.

“[On winning quicker to go level with USA’s NRR] It was in our mind, to win before 14 overs but the pitch made it difficult.”


Babar Azam blamed the pitch for his side’s cautious approach and also addressed hiis furious reaction after getting out. The right-hander was dismissed for the second consecutive time while attempting a shot towards the third man.

“[On getting angry when getting out] Because I’m out with the same shot twice. This is my shot but sometimes you need success. I’ll try my best,” he admitted.

Pakistan’s Chase

The chase didn’t start well for Pakistan, with no boundaries in the first four overs. Saim Ayub fell cheaply for six runs, leaving Pakistan at 20-1 in 4.2 overs.


Babar Azam (33) and Mohammad Rizwan (53 off 53) then steadied the ship with a 63-run partnership. Rizwan’s unbeaten knock ensured Pakistan crossed the finish line in 17.3 overs.

Earlier, Pakistan’s bowlers dominated the game, restricting Canada to 106-7. Mohammad Amir, Shaheen Afridi, Naseem Shah, and Haris Rauf all contributed to a disciplined bowling effort.

Amir and Rauf took two wickets each, while Naseem and Shaheen chipped in with one apiece. Canada’s Aaron Johnson was the lone bright spot for his team, scoring 52 off 44 balls.

Pakistan’s victory keeps their hopes alive, but they face a must-win game and need other results to go their way to progress to the Super 8 stage.

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