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Pakistan’s captain Babar Azam gestures after scoring a century (100 runs) during the first day of the first cricket Test match between Pakistan and New Zealand at the National Stadium in Karachi on December 26, 2022. — AFP

Pakistan skipper Babar Azam, who was named as captain of the ICC ODI Team of the Year for 2022, has also made his way to the Test squad. 

The star batter was included in the list for his prolific form in the longest format of the game throughout the year.

“Pakistan’s Test captain was consistently outstanding with the bat throughout 2022, scoring four centuries and a further seven half-centuries in the calendar year,” the ICC stated while praising the batter for his performances. 

“In nine matches he hit an extraordinary 1184 runs at an average of 69.94, with his four centuries coming one each against the four Test opponents he faced.

Test Team of 2022 — ICC
Test Team of 2022 — ICC

“The much-anticipated home series against Australia saw Babar hit 390 runs in home conditions, and he amassed 348 more when England visited later in the year. His 196 against the Aussies in Karachi in March was, and still is, his highest individual score in Tests.”

Australia have the most number of players in the ICC team with Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Pat Cummins and Nathan Lyon leading the way.

“Slotting in at number three is Marnus Labuschagne, who hit a mountain of runs in the second half of 2022,” the ICC said while praising the Aussie batter.

“The Australian’s 90 in the first innings of the first Test against Pakistan was his highest score of that series, and he registered his first century of the year with a 104 against Sri Lanka in Galle in July.

“But it was the start of the Australian summer that saw Labuschagne hit peak form, scoring a remarkable 502 runs from just four innings against West Indies.

“His 957 total runs across the year came at an average of 56.29.”

Jonny Bairstow, Ben Stokes, who is also named as captain of the side, and James Anderson are the cricketers from England in the lineup.

“England’s extraordinary turnaround in 2022 may have seen Bairstow star with the bat, but it was Ben Stokes who instilled the change and introduced such a remarkable attacking mindset,” the ICC stated.

“Stokes’ captaincy has transformed England, helping them win nine matches since he took over the team at the start of the English summer. And he has been effective with both bat and ball too.”

Stokes hit two centuries and 870 runs during the year, at an average of 36.25 down at number six.

“And he took 26 wickets in the year, using himself in a variety of different roles. His bowling was particularly impactful in the series win over South Africa, where he took 10 wickets at an average of just 15.70,” the ICC added.

West Indies’ Kraigg Brathwaite, South Africa’s Kagiso Rabada and India’s Rishabh Pant are also part of the team.

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