Babar Azam hopeful to win Sri Lanka test series

Picture source - AFP
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The 2023–24 international cricket season for Pakistan will begin on Sunday in Galle with the opening Test of the ICC World Test Championship 2023–25 against Sri Lanka.

The series’ second and final Test will begin on July 24 in Colombo.

Pakistan will compete in the ACC Asia Cup, ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup, and ICC Men’s T20 World Cup in the upcoming 12 months in addition to the ICC World Test Championship games.

Babar Azam and his team will be hoping for a great start in Galle given the all-format back-to-back international cricket schedule.

Pakistan and Sri Lanka have had varying degrees of success in Galle. Sri Lanka has triumphed in four of the seven Test matches so far(2009, 2012, 2014, and 2022), whereas Pakistan has triumphed in three of them(by an innings and 163 runs in (2000), 10 wickets in (2015), and four wickets in 2022).

Twelve months earlier, when Pakistan last triumphed in Galle, the visitors chased down the 342-run mark with the loss of six wickets, thanks to Abdullah Shafique historic 160 not out and Babar Azam’s 55 after his119 in the first innings.

Shaheen Shah Afridi, one of the bowlers, had four wickets in the first innings before being hurt in the second and was unable to continue.The biggest bowling performances, though, came in the second innings when Yasir Shah’s three for 122 and Mohammad Nawaz’s five for 88 collaborated to split wickets.

“Thrilled to be back in red-ball format and all eyes are on the Galle Test as we are prepared and ready for the challenge.”

Pakistan skipper Babar Azam said, “We are taking one step at a time, but we have to be consistent across all forms.”

“13 of our players were there when the Galle Test was held one year ago, which is a plus. Abrar Ahmed has acknowledged that he is a strong candidate for our combination. We have high expectations for him in this and future series, so I’m confident this trip will be a fantastic learning experience for him.”

“I’m really happy that Shaheen Shah Afridi is back. In addition to his ability to take wickets, his presence constantly inspires and uplifts the team. I am aware that Shaheen has been pining for Test cricket after missing red-ball cricket so much.”

“Like any host nation, Sri Lanka will want to capitalize on their prowess in spin bowling.” According to Mickey Arthur, the Sri Lankan team’s previous coach, we have received positive reports about them, and I believe we are ready to face them. As this is a test of skills, temperament, and endurance in Test cricket, we will focus on the fundamentals and exercise patience.

“Even though test findings from the previous year may not have been favorable for us, as a side, we have unquestionably evolved and progressed.”