“We are going to play the World Cup and not just against India,” Babar said. “There are eight other teams and it is not just about India and only if we beat them we will reach the final. We are not just focusing on one team, we are focusing on all the other teams in the tournament. Our plan is that we have to play well against all of them and win against them.”
Pakistan have to play their nine league matches in five cities, with their first stop being Hyderabad. There they will play the Netherlands and Sri Lanka – Zimbabwe’s two qualifiers – on 6 and 12 October respectively. Their next match is a big one, a trip west to Ahmedabad for a match with India on October 15. They will then head south to Bengaluru to play Australia on October 20 and then to Chennai, where they will also play Afghanistan and South Africa on October 23. 27 October. Pakistan will then shuttle between Kolkata (vs Bangladesh) and Bengaluru (vs New Zealand) on October 31 and November 4 respectively, before finishing their league stage matches against England in Kolkata.
“In our view, wherever cricket is played, wherever there are matches, we are going to play there. Because that’s what we do as professionals, you have to be prepared for everything. You expose yourself to different situations. environment and that’s what we call a challenge and you accept it and live up to it. I, as a player and captain, want to score runs in every country, dominate Pakistan and win matches. So that’s all we have in mind and not only that, we are going to play against a team.”
A letter was sent by the PCB to the government seeking advice on whether the Pakistani team should be allowed to travel to India, and if so, whether Pakistan had any objections regarding any of the five venues for the Games. , and whether the Pakistani government wants to send a security delegation.
Babar wants fast runs from test batsmen
Most of the Pakistan players are currently in Karachi, attending a conditioning camp ahead of the two-match Test series in Sri Lanka. The series will begin on July 16 in Galle, with Pakistan playing their first Test after a gap of six months. The second test is in Colombo from 24th July.
In the last ICC World Test Championship cycle, Pakistan were derailed in their home series with a 0-1 loss against Australia, 0-3 against England and a drawn series against New Zealand. The Sri Lanka Test series is the first overseas series for Pakistan in the 2023-2025 cycle, and also includes tours to Australia (three Tests) and South Africa (two). They will host England (three), West Indies (two) and Bangladesh (two) at home.
“When you reflect on the Championship, you look at all the positives and mainly what we were lacking,” Babar said. “We looked back and picked up some points. We will try to start this cycle on a positive note and raise our game by 5-10 per cent. We talked about taking our partnerships longer and trying to get the ball right. Also we have to take wickets. In batting, if we were going with 3.5 (run rate), now we have to change our game to try to go with 4.”
On the question of learning something from the book of how England and Australia play Test cricket, Babar insisted that his team has its own way of playing.
“The approach as a captain is to win matches and always be looking for results,” he said. “Every team has a mentality and they play their own way. We try to play our best game and apply ourselves. For example, we scored 360 (342) in Galle last year on the strength of our game. Had chased. That’s when you have to do that. Score at the rate of three or four but sometimes you have to be defensive so it is the demand of time which decides how you will go into the situation. You have to score every Learn every day and try to add new things to the system.
Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo’s Pakistan correspondent