Asia Cup 2018: Pakistan are suffering from confidence crisis, says Mickey Arthur  

Pakistan are suffering from a ‘confidence crisis’, feels head coach Mickey Arthur. A second-time batting failure from the Men In Green helped India to a fourth victory in a row in the Asia Cup, which sent them straight to the final with a game in hand. Although the coach feels the team is afraid of failure, he insists this tournament would be a huge learning experience for the players.

Although Pakistan have a realistic chance of reaching the final, they suffered a defeat at the hands of India, who chased down a target of 238 with 9 wickets and 63 balls to spare. Centuries from openers Shikhar Dhawan and Rohit Sharma helped the cause.

Speaking after the game, Arthur highlighted the team’s mistakes and provided insights on where they could improve.

'They're suffering a confidence crisis at the moment, there's a little bit of fear of failure in the dressing room, there's a bit of a reality check for exactly where we are as a cricket team,' he said. 'In terms of the worst performance, nine wickets, it's got to be up there but we're on a journey, we'll get better and stronger than this.'

The South African cited Fakhar Zaman as an example.

'Look at Fakhar Zaman, he's an incredible player, he's an X-factor player and we expect him to take the game on at the top of the order, but he's doubting his game a little at the moment. We've got to just ride the wave with him. If we do that, when he comes out, he'll be a better player for this. We've banked the work, the work is all done.'

He elaborated:

'There was inconsistency in lines and lengths, and it's disappointing. We went into panic mode. Once they got in, we started searching for wickets. The way you get wickets is, you've got to build pressure. We didn't stay with our plans long enough.

Our plans was to hit the hard lengths, hit top of off with our seamers, and then have the ability to put them under pressure in the middle. We've got to attack to take wickets, it didn't happen and we weren't patient enough. There were plans but they weren't executed for long enough.'

The 50-year-old turned down critical statements regarding Sarfraz Ahmed’s captaincy and added that it is high time the tireless efforts of his players pay off.

Should Pakistan beat Bangladesh on Wednesday, they will face India in the all-important final once again.


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