‘Nailing Itself in the Foot,’ Mickey Arthur Finally Shares What Happened With Pakistan Team

Ex-Pakistan team director Mickey Arthur has opened up about the tough times he faced during his tenure, particularly highlighting the recent ODI World Cup 2023 match against India in Ahmedabad as one of the most challenging moments.

He commented, “I continually witness Pakistan cricket nailing itself in the foot,” when asked about Pakistan cricket’s future.

During a recent interview with Wisden, Mickey Arthur mentioned that Pakistan team had faced tough challenges during the World Cup, especially for the players, due to the lack of something crucial.

Arthur said,

It was extremely tough not having any Pakistan support. The one thing that really drives the Pakistan team is the incredible support they receive at grounds and hotels.

He added,

Here we never had that, and that was quite tough in a World Cup, particularly for the players as you can imagine it was a tough, hostile environment in Ahmedabad. But we were expecting this, and to their credit our players never moaned or complained once.

It should be noted that Arthur was sacked after Pakistan failed to secure a spot in the semi-finals of the ODI World Cup last year.

Pakistan’s recent World Cup campaign faced many off-field challenges, from reports of dressing room tensions to leaked WhatsApp conversations involving former captain Babar Azam. However, former coach Mickey Arthur has come forward to shed light on the situation.

Arthur believes that the external distractions surrounding the Pakistan cricket team were often baseless and fueled by social media. He expressed that within the team, the focus remained on their game plan and the players’ defined roles, with no significant disputes among the squad members.

“The outside noise with Pakistan is incredible, you just have to check your Twitter feed to see so many fires that are ignited out there, that have absolutely no truth attached to them. “You end up – and I found this out the first time – you’re just constantly extinguishing those fires and chasing your tail,” he said.

Arthur, who previously guided Pakistan to victory in the 2017 Champions Trophy, defended his decision to serve as the Director for the Pakistan team while maintaining his role with the English county Derbyshire. He expressed surprise at being labeled an “online coach” by some former Pakistani players, asserting that he was closely involved with the team, communicated regularly with the coaching staff, and had a deep understanding of the team’s dynamics.

Furthermore, Mickey Arthur also pointed to his trust in former PCB Chairman Najam Sethi as a key factor behind his decision to return to the Pakistan cricket setup. He commended Sethi for extending an opportunity to him after his dismissal from Australia and underscored their strong working rapport as a significant motivator.

In his concluding remarks, Arthur also offered some valuable advice to the PCB. He urged the board to establish a more stable system that can nurture player trust in the structure, instill confidence in the selection process, and prioritize team unity.

Published by
Muhammad Abbas Azad