On 8 March 2023, Babar Azam scored his maiden ton in the Pakistan Super League for Peshawar Zalmi. His team took on Quetta Gladiators in the ongoing tournament as both teams were looking for a win to improve their chances. But, his hundred was not enough as his team suffered an eight-wicket loss in Rawalpindi.
But, the former New Zealand cricketer, Simon Doull came up with criticism over the strike rate of the star batter. He said that the Zalmi skipper took many balls to score his hundred and that affected his team’s overall total. Notably, Babar Azam reached 83 off just 46 balls. Then, he took 14 more balls to reach the triple-figure mark.
“Hundreds are brilliant and the stats are great. But it has to be team first,” - Simon Doull’s dig at Babar Azam
During the commentary, the former Kiwi player said that personal records are great. But, a player should always keep his team ahead of his personal record. “The last little while, that is all that been happening rather than putting the team first. Rather than looking for boundaries. The is still so much firepower to come. Hundreds are brilliant and the stats are great. But it has to be team first,” Doull said.
He further added: "Where does that directive come from? Does that come from Babar who wants to bat on a road and improve his own stats? Or does it come from above him?” Earlier, he also took a dig at Mohammad Rizwan for taking many balls to score a century in the ongoing tournament. However, some fans came up and showed support for Doull to troll Babar. They also compared his innings with Jaso Roy’s as he scored a match-winning ton with a much better strike rate.
Speaking of the match, Babar Azam scored 115* runs off 65 balls, at a strike rate of 176.92. Thus, his team scored 240 runs for two wickets in 20 overs. In reply, Jason Roy scored 145* runs off 63 balls, at a strike rate of 230.15 and his team chased down the target in 18.2 overs.
Here are some viral tweets from fans to troll Babar while supporting Doull:
Simon Doull was right. When Babar came close to his century, he started playing slow. He scored last 20 runs off 14 balls. Look at the result, when you see the batting performance of Quetta Gladiators, you will realize Peshawar were short of 15-20 runs. That's y they lost.— Harsh Rathore (@harshrathor7) March 9, 2023
i dont get this criticism on simon doull. he has every right to criticize any player. yes i love babar azam with all my heart but i refuse to become a cult follower.— taha ~ captain levi stan ~ (@murshad_levi) March 9, 2023
Exactly whàt iffi bhai said from last 1and half year Simon doull nailed Babar 🔥— Nitin Dahiya (@Da33089104Nitin) March 9, 2023
Simon doull got cooked for stating facts last night. Had Babar not wasted so many balls his team could have fired 30 more runs https://t.co/yB15GHpOJY— Aditya Shankar Tewari (@shankaradii) March 9, 2023
100 % agree with Simon Doull.— Human (@its__Human) March 9, 2023
Babar played selfish inning to score 100
Its so easy to bodied dabar azam 😭— Daksh Kumar jha (@liberalviratian) March 8, 2023
Bodied Zimbabar. Stat padder going at a SR of 175 when the rest of players in the match are at around 200 and above. Big big reason for the loss!— #PotterOut (@punterankit) March 9, 2023
100% right!— Mohammed Umar (@MohammedUmar__7) March 8, 2023
Simon Doull sometimes goes overboard while giving his views. What's seen as blunt is sometimes stupid. Shan was batting on 62 of 37 and Simon was talking about him retiring and that he's done his job. Babar scored 100 of 60 and he said Babar is playing for milestones.— Shoaib (@shoaibwani_) March 9, 2023