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Simon Doull Slams Kohli & Babar’s Slow Approach

Simon Doull slams Virat Kohli and Babar Azam’s slow milestone approach in IPL and PSL

  • Former NZ cricketer Simon Doull criticized Virat Kohli and Babar Azam’s slow milestone approach during IPL and PSL matches.
  • Doull stated that in T20 cricket, players need to keep going with wickets in hand and that the team should always come first.
  • Babar’s teammate, Imam-ul-Haq, agreed with Afridi’s comments and said that Babar himself acknowledged that he needs to bring more dominance and command in his game to finish matches and not leave them midway.

Former New Zealand cricketer and renowned commentator Simon Doull took a dig at star batters Virat Kohli and Babar Azam during the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL) and recently-concluded Pakistan Super League (PSL) season eight, respectively.

Simon Doull slams Virat Kohli and Babar Azam’s slow milestone approach in IPL and PSL

While playing for Royal Challengers Bangalore against Lucknow Super Giants, Kohli scored 61 runs in 44 balls. Despite a quick start, scoring 42 runs in his first 25 balls, Kohli scored 19 runs in as many deliveries before being dismissed.

“Kohli started off like a train playing a lot of shots. But from 42 to 50 he took 10 balls. Concerned about a milestone. I don’t think there’s room for that anymore. You’ve just got to keep going with wickets in hand,” Doull said during commentary.

Earlier, Doull made a similar comment about Pakistan captain and prolific batter Babar Azam during the recently-concluded PSL season eight. Peshawar Zalmi’s Azam scored his maiden PSL century against the Quetta Gladiators and finished with a 65-ball 115.

He reached his fifty with a maximum, taking 32 balls, and 28 more to convert that into a ton. However, the last 20 runs leading up to his century didn’t come in a free-flowing manner since he was on 80 off 44 at one stage but took 16 more balls to get to the three-figure mark.

“The last little while, that’s all that has been happening rather than looking for boundaries still, when you’ve got so much firepower to come [Mohammad Haris, Haseebullah Khan and all-rounder Aamer Jamal were waiting in the wings],” said Doull during commentary.

“Hundreds are great, stats are brilliant, but it still must be team first,” he added.

Former Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi and Babar’s teammate Imam-ul-Haq also questioned Azam’s batting in the shortest format of the game.

“Babar is number one in the world, he is the identity of the country, but one thing that stops him from reaching the AB de Villiers/Virat Kohli rank is finishing. As a match-winner, he hasn’t proved himself yet. If I am wrong, you can correct me. I want him to become a finisher. He should finish games. That’s the thing holding back his class,” Afridi said while speaking on a local news channel.

“I would like to add…because I know him and this is spoken about in our discussions. Babar agrees with it too. He says: ‘I have played enough cricket, I need to bring more dominance and command in my game so that I finish matches and don’t leave them midway’. Lala [Afridi] is absolutely right,” Imam added while agreeing with Afridi’s remarks.

Doull’s comments have sparked a debate among cricket fans and experts about the importance of milestones versus the team’s needs in T20 cricket.

In T20 cricket, quick runs are important, but so is staying at the crease and building partnerships to set up a good total for the team. It remains to be seen if Kohli and Azam will change their approach in future matches or continue to go for personal milestones.

In the end, while individual achievements are important, it is the team that ultimately wins matches and championships.

Also, see:

All you need to know about new PSL franchises

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