MELBOURNE: Pakistan captain Babar Azam has urged his players to believe in themselves and told fans to keep praying for the delivery of their second T20 World Cup title on Sunday.
After losing their first two Super 12 matches, the 2009 champions have rebounded superbly and bring momentum into Sunday's final against England at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. "I'm more excited than nervous since we've performed well in our last three matches," Babar told reporters at the MCG on Saturday.
"It is no doubt that pressure exists but it can only be suppressed with confidence and belief in ourselves. And for good results it is impertinent that one must do so. "The Pakistan nation has always been our backbone. They uphold us through their enthusiasm. I would again request them to support us and keep praying."
The final comes 30 years after Imran Khan's Pakistan beat England to win the 50-overs World Cup, the country's first global white-ball title. Pakistan board chief Ramiz Raja, who opened the batting and took the final catch that sealed victory in the 1992 final, shared memories of the tournament with Babar's team on Friday.
"When the chairman came and shared his experience of the World Cup, it put a massive boost in our confidence," said Babar. A settled Pakistan are unlikely to make any changes to their team for the final, and Babar said they would not stray from the trusted game-plan.
"Our strategy is to stick to our plan and using our pace attack as our strength to win the final," he added. "Utilising the powerplay to grab as many wickets will be essential for the match."