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Sarfaraz Ahmed backs Babar-led Pakistan after Asia Cup debacle

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Former Pakistan captain and wicketkeeper batter Sarfaraz Ahmed came out in support of the Babar Azam-led national cricket team following their early exit from the Asia Cup 2023.

Taking to Instagram, Sarfaraz Ahmed shared a post from a local news outlet, which quoted him saying “supportive words” for the current national team.

“No player goes to the field to lose! The captain is nothing without his players,” Sarfaraz Ahmed was quoted.

“[and] I was very lucky to have Babar Azam, Imam Ul Haq, Shadab Khan, Shaheen Afridi, Hassan Ali and Faheem Ashraf who are now the backbone of the team,” it added.

Pakistan, who entered the Asia Cup 2023 as a top-ranked ODI side, failed to live up to the label of being the favourites as they crashed out of the tournament after finishing fourth in the Super 4s stage.

The hosts got off to a solid start to their Asia Cup campaign as they humbled Nepal by a massive 238 runs before settling for a stalemate with arch-rivals India after their second group-stage match was washed out on September 2.

Pakistan then crushed Bangladesh to script a winning start to the Asia Cup 2023 Super 4s but failed to imitate similar results against India and Sri Lanka and thus failed to qualify for the final.

But, Bangladesh’s stunning victory over India in the last Super 4s fixture on Friday meant Pakistan slipped to fourth as the Shakib Al Hasan-led side acquired the third position due to a superior net run rate.

Former champions India and Sri Lanka will now lock horns in the Asia Cup 2023 final on Sunday with a reserve day on Monday.

Notably, India are the most successful nation in the Asia Cup history, having won the title seven times, followed by Sri Lanka, who emerged victorious on six occasions.

READ: Naseem Shah likely to miss ICC Men’s World Cup – report

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