Pakistan head coach Mickey Arthur has said that the defeats against India in the ongoing Asia Cup 2018, is a timely reminder of where his side needs to improve upon and went onto state that the Sarfraz Ahmed led side seems to be suffering from a “confidence crisis” at the moment.
Deciding to bat first in Dubai, Pakistan failed to get going at all against a world class limited overs attack and could only manage 237/7 in their 50 overs. Although Shoaib Malik, again, played a superb knock of 78 from 90 balls, it was never going to be enough to bridge the gap between two sides.
This is when the Indian openers Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan scored 111* and 119 respectively and simply dominated their way through to another brilliant Indian win.
Mickey Arthur termed it one of Pakistan's “worst performances” and said, “We are not abandoning them. Yes, they are suffering a bit of confidence crisis at the moment. There is fear of failure in the dressing room. There is a bit reality check of where we are as a cricket team” before adding, “In terms of worst performance, nine wickets has to be up there. India have very good players. If we give them an inch, they are going to make us pay and they did that,”
Reflecting on the disappointing batting effort, Arthur felt, “Our strike rates were not good enough with the bat. With the ball, we need to strike early against these guys. We had a couple of chances, we didn’t take them. When you get these guys chances on wickets like these, they dominate you,” and reiterated, “We need to get into their middle order as quick as we can that’s when we can inflict most damage”
Arthur is also in full praise of the Indian team for their magnificent performance in the tournament and said, “We need to get into their middle order as quick as we can that’s when we can inflict most damage” adding, “One thing that really impressed me, we were at optional training session the other day and I sat there for 20 minutes. I saw Jasprit Bumrah in a net next to us execute yorker after yorker after yorker, He put that into practice. In our review, we will definitely show it to our young bowlers that his execution and even Bhuvneshwar’s in death overs was very good,”
Looking forward to what is now a virtual semi-final between his side and Bangladesh on September 26 for a place in the final against India, Arthur stressed, “It’s a semi-final now. We have to find a way to dig ourselves out of the hole we are in at the moment. We will come back from this. We are at our best in must-win matches. That’s when we come to the party, I believe in our players. I think they are a fantastic bunch of players,”
(Inputs from PTI)