Mickey Arthur puts Pakistan ODI players on notice
Pakistan coach Mickey Arthur has put the players in the One-Day International squad on notice, stating that no player is guaranteed his spot in the side.
Arthur's remarks have come after Pakistan's defeat in the first ODI against England in Southampton, where the team managed to score just 260 for six in 50 overs.
According to Arthur, Pakistan are playing a style of cricket which keeps them behind the competition and has urged the side to adopt an aggressive and attractive style of play to keep up with the rest of the teams.
“Playing the way we played the other night...we’re behind the times,” Arthur said.
“That was my first ODI with Pakistan and everything I’ve heard was on view really.
“I want to see the guys go out and express themselves, play with a bit of freedom.
“England and all the other teams around the world are sort of playing the same way.
“We want to play with a style that is fairly attractive and doesn’t leave us behind the rest of the world.
“We’ve had a real good chat about it and got some ideas about how we can put it right.
“I’ve said to the boys we’ve got absolutely nothing to lose.”
Pakistan's current ODI ranking puts them in the ninth spot and if they don’t make a move upwards before 30th September, 2017, they face the prospect of playing in the qualifying tournament to fight for a place in the 2019 Cricket World Cup.
Stressing that his aim is to build a world-class group of players in the coming two years, Arthur as asked the players to step up and claim their places or make way for younger talent.
Furthermore, Arthur said that he has made it clear to all the players in the current ODI squad that their spots in the side are not safe and that only merit will help them retain their places in the team.
“We’re going to build a team we think can compete in a year or two’s time,” he said.
“The invitation is there to every player: step up or we’ll find somebody else who can step up, it’s as simple as that.
“I’ve actually started, the other night, going through potential players in Pakistan who can fulfil roles we think we’re going to need to evolve.
“In the meantime, the 15 players we’ve got here we’ve got to back 100 per cent and given them the opportunity to stake their claim to be part of the Pakistan ODI squad going forward.
“I’ll look into the archives in Pakistan and see if there’s any young players around who can do that.
“What we’ve got is what we’ve got at the moment and we’ve got to formulate a plan to make it work for us.
“I said to the players this morning nobody’s safe.
“And if you’re over 30 you’ve got to be coming to table more often than not otherwise it’s an opportunity to blood some younger players.
“I’m telling no secrets, nobody is 100% safe in the ODI side and the guys know that.
“Everybody knows they’re on notice.”
Pakistan currently have 87 rating points and are placed behind the eighth-ranked West Indies, who have 94 rating points, making it a seven-point gap between the two sides.
© Cricket World 2016