Former Pakistan captain Mushtaq Mohammad has pitted both Virat Kohli and Pakistan batsman Babar Azam in the same league although he rates the India captain much more experienced.
“Kohli might be a better player and more experienced but Babar is a top batsman and in same league but he doesn’t get too many Tests in a year,” Mohammad, who is based in Birmingham, told PTI on Thursday.
Mushtaq, one of Pakistan’s most successful captains, was impressed by India’s success and growth as a cricket nation.
“They are ahead of Pakistan and some other nations now because they have developed a sound cricket system by not making too many changes to their structure, their domestic and international players are well paid and they have built a strong pool of players,” said Mushtaq.
Mushtaq is credited with infusing a self-belief in the Pakistan team and introducing a culture of positivity and winning mentality among the players when he became captain in 1976. He was ousted and dropped as captain and player in a mini-revolt by some senior players before the famous 1978/79 tour to India where Pakistan lost the Test series.
“That (IPL) has helped them a lot. They pay and look after their players so well that their players don’t mind this restriction and can focus on India.
“Indian cricket is at top now because look at the number of matches they are playing at home and they are also getting better on overseas tours. In comparison Pakistan hardly plays regular Test series.”
He rued the fact that India and Pakistan were not playing regularly against each other either at senior or lower levels.
“It is very sad for someone like me because I played a lot against and with Indian players and I learnt from them and they from me. It is unfortunate that politics has crept in and India doesn’t want to play bilateral matches with us. It is hurting world cricket,” he added.