‘Words cannot define the gratitude I have for my fans’ – Babar Azam after his match-winning century against South Africa

‘Words cannot define the gratitude I have for my fans’ – Babar Azam after his match-winning century against South Africa

Babar scored a 59-ball 122 in the third T20I at the SuperSport Park.

Babar Azam
Babar Azam. (Photo by PHILL MAGAKOE/AFP via Getty Images)

Babar Azam was in the form of his life during Pakistan’s third T20I against South Africa at the SuperSport Park in Centurion. The right-hander notched a 49-ball ton, helping the visiting team take an unassailable 2-1 lead in the four-match series. In the previous game, he made a run-a-ball 50 at the Wanderers in Johannesburg and was greeted with a bit of criticism.

However, the Punjab-born made amends, scoring 122 runs off 59 balls with the help of 15 fours and four sixes. On the back of Babar’s knock, Pakistan chased down the mammoth target of 204 with nine wickets in hand and 12 balls to spare. After the victory, Azam was over the moon and he expressed gratitude to the fans for being with the team through thick and thin.

He took to Twitter and wrote, “Words cannot define the gratitude I have for my fans & especially the people of my country. This couldn’t have been possible without your unwavering support & trust. Thank you for making me feel blessed & honoured. Keep supporting. Keep praying. Keep believing.”

I have made a lot of sacrifices: Babar Azam

In the run-chase, Babar got the apt support from Mohammad Rizwan, who managed a 47-ball 73 with five fours and two sixes. Their 197-run partnership for the opening wicket broke the backbone of the Proteas bowling unit. Speaking on his knock in the presentation ceremony, Babar talked about focussing on his strengths and lauded Rizwan for his dedication.

“I really felt good. I was waiting for a knock like this. I focus on my strength. I want to continue like that. When the rate is around 10, you need to take a few more risks. Rizwan had fasting (Ramadan) but he did extremely well. Batted well and also kept for 20 overs,” Babar said

Recently, Babar also became the ICC’s number.1 ranked ODI batsman. The youngster surpassed India’s Virat Kohli on his way to the top.

“A dream in one day cricket has come true. I have made a lot of sacrifices for that and a lot of effort has gone into this. I have always wanted to keep learning every day,” he added.