Pakistani team coach Mickey Arthur faces the music

Pakistani team coach Mickey Arthur faces the music

Pakistan’s team director Mickey Arthur insisted he was ready to face the music after Pakistan’s World Cup campaign ended with a 93-run defeat against England in Kolkata on Saturday.

It was the second successive World Cup where they missed out on a semi-final spot by finishing in fifth place in the 10-nation table.

The 2019 debacle led to the end of Arthur’s first spell as head coach.

“Look, I’ll just go back to the Peak District in Derbyshire, I’ll be really happy and that’ll be okay,” said Arthur after overseeing a campaign which brought four wins and five losses, including a defeat to Afghanistan.

Arthur did not sever his ties with Derbyshire and only joined up with the Pakistan team once the English county season was over.

That was an arrangement severely criticised by some former Pakistan players who described Arthur’s job as “coaching on Zoom”.

Arthur admitted that 1992 champions Pakistan simply did not play well enough.

“We finished fifth, and fifth is where we deserve to finish with the cricket that we’ve played over the last six weeks,” said Arthur.

“Inconsistency, unfortunately, doesn’t breed success. But that is no excuse at all.”

He added: “I came in to do this directive job, obviously in conjunction with Derbyshire because I care a hell of a lot for that dressing room. Pakistan cricket is very close to my heart.”

With Pakistan out of the race for the last four, New Zealand will now meet undefeated India in the first semi-final in Mumbai on November 15.

Australia face South Africa in the second semi-final in Kolkata a day later.

“I really believe the best four teams in the competition are now playing the semi-finals,” admitted Arthur.

Arthur also backed under-fire skipper Babar Azam to stay in the role. -APP/AFP