Babar Azam opens up on fans chanting his name in India

Pakistan captain Babar Azam recently shared insights on his experience playing against India at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad during the 2023 ODI World Cup. He also discussed his interactions with veteran India batter Virat Kohli following the match. Additionally, he expressed his affection for Hyderabadi biryani and samosa chaat during the tournament held in October-November.

While speaking about fans chanting his name in India, the 29-year-old stated that it was a surprise to him. Remarkably, this was his first time playing in India, and he had little knowledge about the country at that time.

“Mai India se expect nahi kar raha tha (I was not expecting it from India). Mai bilkul nahi expect kar raha tha. Mai first time ja raha tha Indian mujhe wahaan ka koi knowledge nahi tha (I was not expecting it at all. It was my first time in India and I had no knowledge about the country),” Babar said on Zalmi TV about fans chanting his name in India.

“Maine baat ki thi wahaan ke conditions and all lekin jab hum wahaan utre aur jaisa unhone welcome diya wo outstanding tha (I have spoken to people about the playing condition and all but the welcome we’re given at Hyderabad airport was outstanding),” he added.

Babar mentioned that his side received immense love from Indian fans throughout the World Cup. He recalled how fans cheered and turned up in large numbers even during their practice sessions.

“Wo ek alag experience tha. Unka pyar tha, logo ne bahut pyar diya humey, bahut appreciate kiya (It was a different experience. It was their love, Indian people gave us so much love, and they appreciated our cricket).”

“Humare practice matches mey log aaye yaar, pura stadium packed tha. Hyderabad mey pura stadium packed tha (Even in our practice games, people were cheerring for us. The entire stadium in Hyderabad was jam packed,” he recalled.

It was a different vibe playing in India: Babar

Babar Azam went on to speak about the atmosphere at the Narendra Modi Stadium, stating it was a different vibe.

“It was a different vibe. The entire stadium was see of blue. You are playing in India you can expect it. But in other venues, we also received expectional support as well,” he said.

Discussing his post-match interactions with Virat Kohli, Babar also opened up about chatting with Virat Kohli whenever they face off on the field. Additionally, he mentioned his admiration for engaging with other cricketing stalwarts such as Australia’s Steven Smith and New Zealand’s Kane Williamson.

“I always try and talk to him whenever we play against each other. I always ask him few questions and he helps me with it. Not only him, I also talk a lot to Steve Smith and Kane Williamson, when we play against Australia and New Zealand, respectively. I had a good chat with Virat Kohli, there are things that we talk about that I can’t share here but it was fruitful,” he added.

He further spoke about Indian food, stating “I loved Hyderabadi biryani and the samosa chaat as well. It was unique.”