"If this was Kohli, everyone would be talking, but as it's Babar Azam, no one is talking. He averages 68 since 2018 & 55 in white-ball cricket. He’s young, he’s elegant & he’s got swagger. They talk about the fab 4, but it’s the fab 5 & Babar is in that," former England captain turned cricket pundit Nasser Hussain said.
Comparisons are inevitable and Babar Azam, for his brilliance, has been compared to the best in the business at a young age. The comparison has opened up multiple dimensions with some even claiming it to be a fluke and hinted that Azam would need a few more years to be as good as Virat Kohli.
In fact, his captain Azhar Ali had eluded confidence in him, and like Hussain said - he is right up there with Kohli and Steve Smith in the longest format of the game.
Azam is 25. He has shouldered the burden of scoring runs for Pakistan across formats and continues to grow in his game. If he does, in this manner, he might well break a few records currently owned by the Indian captain. He has been the most successful player for Pakistan in the modern era and perhaps the most attractive to watch after Mohammad Yousuf and Zaheer Abbas.
Babar Azam gameplay
Pakistan returned to the international circuit with the first of three match Test series against England, which got underway on Wednesday at Old Trafford. Calling it correctly, Ali opted to bat.
The captain was expected to bat but he was sent back for a six-ball duck after Chris Woakes caught him plumb, to bring on the man everyone is talking about into the frame.
Azam was in no hurry and his body language depicted that he was contended to hang in there and make the most of his opportunity. Once he started to bat, he got his eye in gauging the pace and movement that the wicket is providing. It was a calm and clear approach as he build up his play.
One of the best aspects of his gameplay was that he did not look to rush through the innings.
Come Day 2, if he spends an hour, he could well go for the Brian Lara record.