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We have no option but attack, says Arthur
Saturday, June 17, 2017
Khalid Hussain

LONDON: Mickey Arthur and his Pakistan team promised an all out attack ahead of their ICC Champions Trophy Pool B game against India at Edgbaston on June 4. But they were as aggressive as a lamb in front of a lion in that game and crashed to a 124-run defeat. Pakistan’s coach has once again assured that his team will play attacking cricket in the tournament’s final against India here at The Oval on Sunday (today).

Arthur hoped that this time his team will not disappoint."I said before the Edgbaston game (against India), that I thought they were really, really calm. But they're very, very excited now, and there's a hell of a good vibe in that dressing room. Let's hope we can pull out our 'A' game again tomorrow. If we play our 'A' game together and do the basics well, we can beat anybody," he said.

The South African said that the only way Pakistan can beat in-form India is by attacking them."We have to (attack), we've got no option," he said."We've got to try and make that new ball really work for us. We've got to try and get into them.

"That middle order haven't had massive hits, they haven't batted much under pressure of late. So we've got to try and put them under extreme pressure particularly by knocking their top order over.

"If we can do that, we've got a real chance of getting to their underbelly."

Arthur admitted that while his bowlers have been exceptional in the middle overs, their performance has been less than satisfactory with the new ball. "Tactically we'd always spoken about our guys wanting to express themselves with the ball and wanting to attack," he said. "(The second Power Play) historically has been a bit of a dead period where you're just trying to squeeze and contain the opposition.

"But what happens is you just allow the opposition to play, they keep so many wickets in hand that scores are getting too big at the back end.

"So we decided that we really wanted to attack those overs. That for us was key and we gave our bowlers the freedom to do that. We've got the ball to reverse swing, which is good for us because that's a massive weapon."

Arthur was all praise for captain Sarfraz Ahmed."Our execution has been great and we've attacked," he said."The captain has kept slips and put catchers in attacking positions and it's worked for us.

"He's very positive. He's an aggressive captain and he wants to take wickets.

"That's how we want to play and I think that's how you have to play one-day cricket now. He encapsulates all that," Arthur said
 
 
 
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