Former Pakistan cricketer and a legend of the game, Wasim Akram, on Tuesday said that Test captain Azhar Ali will have to perform both as a player and as a captain in a bid to retain is post. Akram feels that if Pakistan fail to beat England in the next two matches, the board might be forced to name a new captain.
Azhar has faced a lot of criticism following the team's three-wicket defeat against England. Pakistan dominated most parts of the match, managed a 107-run lead, set a 277-run target and had reduced the hosts to 117 for five. But a surprising 139-run stand between Jos Buttler and Chris Woakes saved England and subsequently helped them to take a 1-0 lead in the series.
Azhar was slammed form his poor calls which let go of the winning opportunity. Besides, he managed to score only 34 runs in the match which further reduced his average to 21.17 since the start of 2019.
"If we win the remaining Test matches he should continue as captain. It depends on his performance. Obviously, if we don't win and he doesn't perform then Pakistan Cricket Board will have to look for someone else," Wasim Akram was quoted as saying by Dawn.
Earlier, Azhar expressed his disregard towards the criticism that he faced owing to gis captaincy.
"It is easy to criticize with hindsight but we also need to acknowledge if someone posts a partnership like that. Every time you can't blame the captaincy but I am here to take responsibility that we could not defend a total, as a team, which we should have," Azhar said during a virtual press-conference after the Test.
"When I bat, I am not thinking about the captaincy, whether or not I am out of form, and when I am captain, I do not think about my batting at all."
Meanwhile, former skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed posted a message for the captain on Twitter saying, "Bhayya stay strong, InshaAllah, we will bounce back Pakistan zindabad."
The second Test will begin from August 13 onwards in Southampton.