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Pakistan coach worried about pacemen suffering cramps during the game

Pakistan coach Mickey Arthur conceded his team were woeful in Sunday’s Champions Trophy defeat against India but said it was an “insult” to suggest that the squad had regressed under him.

Pakistan coach worried about pacemen suffering cramps during the game
Pakistan paceman Mohammad Amir is being attended to after suffering cramps at Edgbaston

In the end, one of the most eagerly awaited matches of the tournament proved a damp squib as India utterly dominated every aspect of a stop-start, rain-interrupted 124-run victory. 

“That’s a total insult to say we’re playing even worse,” said the 49-year-old South African, who took on the role a little more than a year ago, after his team succumbed meekly at a packed Edgbaston ground. “If you have a look at our records over the last year we’ve won two series. We’ve got ourselves from nine to number eight (in the ODI rankings) and our brand of cricket has changed.” 

Pakistan won the toss but nothing else went right for tit as it dropped catches, persisted with bowlers who bled runs and folded inside 34 overs when it batted. “We had a poor game,” the former South Africa and Australia coach added. 

“But we’re obviously trying our best and we’re trying to change it. Apart from the manner of their surrender, Pakistan is also fretting on the fitness of fast bowlers Mohammad Amir and Wahab. Amir bowled 8.1 overs before developing severe cramp and leaving the field, while Riaz, who conceded 87 runs in 8.4 wicketless overs in the most expensive spell of five-plus overs in tournament history, hobbled off after twisting an ankle. “I don’t know why they’re cramping,” Arthur said. 

“That’s something that I need to take up with the medical team.” Pakistan play South Africa in their next Group B match at the same venue on Wednesday.

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