According to Mickey Arthur, Pakistan’s Team Director and head coach, the highly anticipated clash between Pakistan and India on October 15 in Ahmedabad holds significant importance for fans on both sides of the border. However, Arthur believes that from a cricketing perspective, it is not the ultimate defining moment. He asserts that while he understands the immense interest and emotional significance associated with the match, winning the World Cup requires performing well against all teams.
Arthur aims to downplay the pressure and has already initiated mind games by stating that the pressure will be on India. He anticipates that the Indian team will face high expectations, particularly as they are playing on home soil. Arthur expresses his eagerness to witness how Pakistan will handle the pressure.
Addressing the issue of venue change, Arthur clarifies that while discussions took place regarding moving the match against Afghanistan from Chennai to Bengaluru, it was not a pivotal aspect of their plans. He emphasizes that any team would prefer playing Afghanistan at an alternate venue. He acknowledges that the news surrounding Pakistan’s request for a venue switch against Afghanistan and Australia had negative implications, creating an unfavorable impression of the Pakistani team.
Arthur, who previously coached the Pakistan team from 2016 to 2019, confirms that he advocated for Babar Azam as captain. When rumors circulated about a potential change in captaincy, Arthur spoke to former PCB chairman Najam Sethi, expressing his belief in Babar’s development as a leader. He holds pride in Babar’s growth as a world-class batsman and asserts that the team’s new cricketing philosophy, “The Pakistani Way,” revolves around him. According to Arthur, this philosophy emphasizes unity, self-belief, and unwavering support for Babar’s decisions.
Arthur concludes by highlighting Pakistan’s immense talent and their ability to defeat any team on any given day. He envisions a team that goes all the way and plays fearlessly on the field.