Pakistan captain Babar Azam won the ICC Men’s Player of the Month award for August, ahead of teammate Shadab Khan and West Indies wicketkeeper-batsman Nicholas Pooran. Babar, who is ranked No. 1 in the ICC rankings for batsmen, has had an extraordinary month with two half-centuries and a 150 in four ODI innings. After a rare low score in the first ODI against Afghanistan, the 28-year-old scored consecutive half-centuries to help Pakistan complete a 3-0 series sweep over their Asian rivals.
The maiden half-century helped the Men in Green seal a thrilling last-ball win and take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series. Secondly, a good innings of 60 off 86 balls helped Pakistan reach a competitive total of 268 on a two-paced track in Colombo. His last innings of the month was a brilliant 151 off 131 balls against Nepal in the opening match of the Asia Cup, which helped Pakistan take a step closer to the Super Four stage. During the innings, Babar became the fastest cricketer in history to reach 19 ODI centuries.
Babar Azam scored 264 runs in four innings at a stunning average of 64 and a 92.30 strike rate.
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“The Past Month Has Been Extraordinary For My Team and I” – Babar Azam
Babar Azam was delighted to be named Player of the Month for the third time in his illustrious career as he helped Pakistan win all four matches in August. Earlier this year, the champion batsman became the fastest player to score 5,000 ODI runs in the home ODI series against New Zealand. Babar also won the ICC ODI Cricketer of the Year award in 2021 and 2022.
“I am delighted to be named ICC Player of the Month for August 2023. The past month has been extraordinary for my team and I as we have put some terrific performances,” Babar told ICC.
“With the Asia Cup coming to Pakistan after such a long time, it was great to play in front of the passionate and cricket-loving crowds of Multan and Lahore. That I scored my second ODI score of 150-plus in front of my own people in Multan doubled the joy,” he continued
“I am looking forward to making the most of the form as we head into an exciting phase of cricket with the backend of the Asia Cup nearing and the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup around the corner,” Babar added. “My team and I are eager to bring joy and happiness to the millions of Pakistan fans.”
The brilliant right-handed batsman also became the fastest player to score 2,000 ODI runs as captain in Pakistan’s first Super Four match against Bangladesh. Unfortunately, September has not been so good for the star batsman, with scores of 17 and 10 in his two innings so far. Pakistan had to face defeat at the hands of arch-rivals India in its second Super Four match and will have to face a must-win situation in the match against Sri Lanka on Thursday, September 14.