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Cricket World Cup 2023

‘Today was not the day to do this’ – Wasim Akram criticises Babar Azam over Virat Kohli shirt gift | CWC 2023

Wasim Akram criticised Babar Azam for Kohli's shirt gift | IND vs PAK
by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

Virat Kohli‘s post-match shirt-gifting act to Babar Azam has gained virality on social media, but former Pakistan captain Wasim Akram isn’t too pleased with the public display of camaraderie by Babar after a heavy loss.

In a much-hyped World Cup league match that ended up being fairly one-sided, India blanked Pakistan by seven wickets in front of a capacity crowd in Ahmedabad, climbing on top of the points table.

After the match, Babar and Kohli were seen having a chat on the ground, with Kohli handing over Babar a couple of India jerseys.


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The act received wide appreciation on social media, but not everyone was impressed – one of them being Wasim Akram.

Also read:

Watch: Babar Azam gifts jersey to Hyderabad ground staff after two-week campaign at venue ends

Part of the experts panel in The Pavilion, a Pakistan TV show, Wasim was read out a fan question by host Fakhr-e-Alam.

“I can see Babar is receiving two shirts from Virat Kohli,” the question read. “Everybody is showing this clip over and over again. But after your fans are so hurt after a disappointing performance, this should be a private matter, it should not be done in an open ground.”

Virat Kohli and Babar Azam meet at the Asia Cup 2023

Virat Kohli and Babar Azam at the Asia Cup last month

Wasim Akram agreed to the fan’s sentiment, saying that “today was not the day” to publicly receive shirts, having just lost a big game.

“That’s what I exactly said when I saw the picture [getting the shirts publicly, not privately],” Akram said. “Today was not the day to do this. If you want to do it – if your uncle’s son has asked you to get Kohli’s shirt – then do it after the game in the dressing room.”

Babar Azam did not appear at the post-match press conference, with team director Mickey Arthur taking questions from reporters. Arthur panned Pakistan’s timid performance, saying that the team did not play “The Pakistan way”.

Pakistan play their next match against Australia, on October 20.

To bet on the World Cup with our Match Centre Partners bet365 head here.


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