Pakistan’s unique cricket style and diverse batting.
Ahead of Pakistan’s opening match in the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 against the Netherlands, team director Mickey Arthur expressed his thoughts and enthusiasm about the upcoming challenges in a press conference.
Despite Pakistan’s conceding of nearly 700 runs in warm-up games, Arthur is confident in Pakistan’s bowling, considering it the best in the world. He stated, “I believe our bowling attack is unparalleled globally. If we can put up a good score, our bowlers have the ability to defend it.”
In contrast to their practice during the Asia Cup, where Pakistan announced their playing XI one day prior to the game, they will now reveal it at the toss. Arthur explained, “We have a clear idea of our team, and our 11 players are prepared. The playing XI will be disclosed when the coin is tossed.”
Reflecting on the team’s progress since 2019, Arthur emphasized, “We came very close in the 2019 World Cup. Now, these players are seasoned; over the past four years, they have gained extensive experience. In this four-year period, we have the best winning record in ODIs.”
Arthur also discussed the team’s cricketing identity, stating, “We play according to our own unique style, known as the Pakistan way. We intend to win the World Cup in the same manner. While form may fluctuate, the quality of our players is unquestionable.” He underscored the team’s commitment to their distinctive style of play.
Arthur dismissed the notion that Pakistan’s batting heavily relies on captain Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan, stating, “Our batting doesn’t solely revolve around Babar and Rizwan. We have several talented batsmen, including Imam. Saud Shakeel and Fakhar Zaman are also top-notch batsmen.”
Additionally, Arthur expressed his confidence in vice-captain Shadab Khan, despite recent criticism of his form, saying, “Shadab is an exceptional all-round player. I anticipate he will regain his form starting tomorrow. I have no concerns about Shadab; he will soon return to his best.”
Regarding the highly anticipated India-Pakistan clash, Arthur acknowledged the inherent tension, stating, “An India-Pakistan match is always high-pressure. The Indian team is strong, but our team is also well-prepared. I hope we can secure two victories before facing India.”
Arthur also commented on the warm reception the team received in India, saying, “The players enjoyed their visit to India and received a warm welcome. Indian fans don’t often get to see Babar, Rizwan, and Shaheen play. You’ve witnessed how Indian fans are embracing the Pakistani team.”
Pakistan’s match against the Netherlands will take place at the Rajiv Gandhi International Cricket Stadium in Hyderabad.
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