Ever since his emergence as Pakistan's best batsman across all forms of the game, Babar Azam has been widely compared with his more experienced Indian counterpart, Virat Kohli, who has been one of the modern-day greats.
For Babar, however, the talks around that comparison have never been something he focusses over. The 25-year-old right-hand batsman said he is instead striving for excellence at his own game, as he once again played down those comparisons.
“I think it’s better if you are not comparing. I have said that he is a different kind of a player, and I am a different player," Babar told reporters during an online press conference amid COVID-19 shutdown.
"I am only striving to bat well and help my team to victory every time I take to the field."
Babar, meanwhile, also gave his views on cricket behind closed doors in wake of the pandemic that has led to the sport's global suspension. He said having played in UAE for more than a decade, Pakistani players are very much used to empty stadiums.
"We know better than other teams how it feels to play without crowd having played most of our cricket in Dubai in last 10 years," he said. "It’s not a great feeling for fans and it’s not great for us also."
Pakistan hosted no Test cricket for a decade because of the Lahore terrorist attack in 2009, where a travelling Sri Lankan team bus was targetted.
Things have changed in recent times, however, with Sri Lanka and Bangladesh playing Tests in Karachi and Rawalpindi, apart from multiple limited-overs fixtures.
The 2020 season of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) also had its entire league-stage played in Lahore, Karachi, Multan and Rawalpindi.
The league's knock-out phase was indefinitely postponed due to the deadly outbreak, which further threatens to ruin the T20 World Cup in Australia, scheduled for October-November, where newly-appointed T20I skipper Babar would hope to take Pakistan to victory.
“Regarding the T20 World Cup, I am sure the ICC will take everything into consideration before taking a decision, and the PCB said it will go ahead with series in England later this summer only when they are 110 percent sure," he said.
(Inputs from PTI)