'I walked 3 miles to reach Gaddafi Stadium for working as a ball boy' - Babar Azam about his early struggles

‘I walked 3 miles to reach Gaddafi Stadium for working as a ball boy’ – Babar Azam about his early struggles

Babar Azam shared some nostalgic tidbits about his days when he used to travel a long distance on foot to reach the Gaddafi Stadium.

Babar Azam
Babar Azam. (Photo by Matt King/Getty Images)

Pakistani cricket is getting back to normalcy especially after Test cricket returned to the country with Sri Lanka playing two Tests and Bangladesh scheduled to do the same. Along with this, the performances of the players have also helped in slowly bringing in people into the stadiums who were starved for some international cricket in front of themselves for over a decade.

Though the Pakistani team faced humiliation at the hands of Australia down under, when they were routed badly, losing the 3-match T20I series 2-0 and were defeated by an innings’ margin in both the Tests. But the best thing to come out of that series was Babar Azam truly living up to his potential in Test cricket, as he slammed a good century in the Brisbane Test match and made an equally wonderful 97 in Adelaide day-night encounter.

“It was the love for the game”: Babar Azam about his struggles in initial days

Speaking to pcb.com.pk, Babar Azam shared some nostalgic tidbits about his days when he used to travel a long distance on foot to reach the Gaddafi Stadium, just for the love of the game and watching his heroes take on the best in world. He also revealed that he worked as a ball boy during the 2007 Test match between Pakistan and South Africa.

“It seems like yesterday when I walked every day for almost three miles to get to the Gaddafi Stadium and work as a ball-boy for the 2007 second Test between Pakistan and South Africa,” Azam was quoted as saying during the interview.

He further mentioned how the star power in the said match attracted him towards the game and made him work hard to reach where he is. “It was the love for the game and the attraction of some of the stalwarts like Inzamam-ul-Haq, Younis Khan, Mohammad Yousuf, Misbah-ul-Haq, Graeme Smith, Hashim Amla, Jacques Kallis and Dale Steyn that pulled me to the home of Pakistan cricket without caring for anything else,” he added.

He said that for a young Babar Azam, the pats on the back, the incentive of being such close to test cricket and watching the legends of the game right in front of his eye, were his biggest rewards. He also termed it once in a lifetime experience. Babar will lead the Pakistan team in the T20Is for the first time at home since taking over from Sarfaraz Ahmed when Bangladesh comes knocking for a 3-match series shortly.

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