On May 5th, 2023, Babar Azam played an incredible innings of 107 runs against New Zealand in the 4th ODI match held at Karachi. It was a thrilling encounter between the two teams, with Pakistan eventually emerging victorious.
Babar Azam’s Stellar Performance
Building the Innings
He has smashed the 18th century of his ODI career. Babar played a perfect anchor role and scored 107 off 117 balls, which included 10 boundaries. Other batters also made some important contributions, which helped the team post a massive score. Shan Masood made 44 off 55, and Agha Salman scored 56 off 46.
Babar Azam’s innings was a masterclass in pacing an ODI innings. He started cautiously, respecting the good deliveries from New Zealand’s seamers. As the innings progressed, he gradually increased his scoring rate, rotating the strike and finding the gaps in the field.
Babar shared crucial partnerships with Fakhar Zaman and Mohammad Rizwan, which helped Pakistan lay a strong foundation for a competitive total. The partnership with Zaman was especially vital as it helped stabilize the innings after losing an early wicket.
Babar’s Technique and Elegance
Throughout his innings, Babar displayed impeccable technique and elegance. His drives through the covers and flicks off his pads were a treat to watch. He also showcased his ability to play spinners with ease, using his feet to dance down the wicket and find the boundaries.
New Zealand’s Bowling Efforts
The Opening Spell
New Zealand’s opening bowlers put in a commendable effort, extracting some movement from the pitch and making it difficult for Pakistan’s openers to score freely. They managed to take an early wicket, but Babar’s resilience proved too much for them.
Spinners in the Middle Overs
The spinners came into play during the middle overs, trying to put the brakes on Pakistan’s scoring rate. While they did create some chances, Babar and his partners managed to neutralize their threat and keep the scoreboard ticking.
Bowling at the Death
In the final overs, New Zealand’s bowlers attempted to restrict Pakistan’s total by bowling tight lines and lengths. Despite their best efforts, Babar and the lower-order batsmen managed to score crucial runs and propel Pakistan to a formidable total.
Impact of Babar’s Century
Setting up the Match
Babar Azam’s century played a significant role in setting up the match for Pakistan. His well-paced innings ensured that Pakistan reached a competitive total, giving their bowlers something to defend. It also put pressure on New Zealand’s batting line-up, as they knew they had to chase a challenging target.
Boosting Team Morale
Babar’s innings not only provided Pakistan with a substantial total, but it also boosted the team’s morale. His teammates were inspired by his performance, and this positive energy translated into their fielding and bowling efforts.
Babar’s Captaincy and Leadership
As captain, Babar Azam led from the front with his century, setting an example for the rest of the team. His leadership and tactical acumen were on display as he made crucial decisions and marshaled his troops on the field to help Pakistan secure victory.
Babar Azam’s 107 runs against New Zealand in the 4th ODI match at Karachi was a testament to his class and skill as a world-class batsman. His innings laid the foundation for Pakistan’s victory, showcasing his ability to pace an innings, build partnerships, and play with elegance and technique. Babar’s performance not only impacted the match but also set an example for his teammates and boosted their morale, leading Pakistan to a well-deserved win.