Pakistan need to be at their best to beat Windies

Captain Sarfraz and coach Arthur explain their strategy immediately on arrival

Gulf News

Dubai: Pakistan team captain Sarfraz Ahmad and coach Mickey Arthur believe that their team will have to be at their best to beat the West Indies.

Addressing the media at the ICC Academy in Dubai Sports City before commencing their first training session, Sarfraz said: “We are playing good cricket. Our aim here is to play good cricket to beat them.”

Pakistan team is riding high after an impressive performance in England recently and is hoping to carry the momentum into this series.

Coach Arthur, though delighted with his team’s show, warned that West Indies are a tough team.

“West Indies are very good Twenty20 team, they are the current world T20 holders, so you can never take them lightly even in conditions like these. The West Indies conditions are similar to anyway so they are going to be a formidable opposition and we are going to have to play really well to beat them.”

Arthur knows that his team has the skills to beat any team. “We have played lot of T20 and One dayers and we have the skills and hence we are confident we will be ready for the challenge,” added Arthur, who took over as Pakistan coach in May following Waqar Younis’ resignation in April due to Pakistan’s early exit from the World T20.

Pakistan has arrived here after recording two successive victories. They won the last One-day match against England at Cardiff and also beat them in the only T20 match against England at Manchester. ““The last two victories against England showed that we are in the right direction. We want to carry the momentum in to the series.”

When Sarfraz was asked whether absence of West Indies star T20 batsman Chris Gayle is an advantage or not, he said: “Our focus will be only on what we have to do and our aim is to start off on a good note. For West Indies and Pakistan the conditions are also the same. In which ground we play does not matter but we have play best on the ground and that is what matters. We have young players who have to potential to do well. We are confident. “

When Arthur was asked whether his team is pace or spin heavy, he said: “Whoever bowls it is about execution of skills. There is no point whether we are pace heavy or spin heavy but what matters is execution of the skills. We will selecting a team with the best variations.”

SPORT PICTURE OF THE DAY: Monday, September 19

Fireworks over the arena during the closing ceremony of the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games at the Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on September 19, 2016. AFP