Arthur stands by Mohali Test suspensions

By Justin Chadwick,

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    Coach Mickey Arthur insists he is the right man to lead the team forward, claiming his recent hardline approach in India will help Australia’s bid to reclaim cricket’s No.1 Test ranking within two years.

    Arthur described the 4-0 series whitewash in India as the toughest tour he’s encountered in his coaching career.

    But the South African had no regrets about suspending vice-captain Shane Watson, Mitchell Johnson, Usman Khawaja and James Pattinson for their failure to complete a simple homework assignment.

    The axing of the quartet for the third Test in Mohali divided opinions, with former Test stars Allan Border and Mark Waugh slamming the move.

    Arthur denied there were any worrying cultural problems in the side, but admitted standards had started to slip ever so slightly following the retirements of Ricky Ponting and Mike Hussey last summer.

    The 44-year-old said the suspensions had an immediate effect on the whole squad, with one player even dropping 10mm off his skinfolds over the next fortnight.

    “If we had our time again, we would do exactly the same thing,” Arthur said of the punishments.

    “It was a line-in-the-sand moment and it’s galvanised the team.

    “We could have gone and just carried on and we would have been third in the world comfortably.

    “But we don’t accept that.

    “We want to get ourselves to No.1 in the world and give ourselves the best possible opportunity to do that.

    “We’ve put some stuff in place that we think can get that team there over the next 24 months.”

    Arthur also scoffed at rumours that skipper Michael Clarke and Watson didn’t get along.

    “They are different personalities, different characters, but get on really well,” Arthur said.

    “Sometimes, it’s a bit of a media beat-up around Watto and Pup.

    “They work very well together. I haven’t seen anything to dispel that.”

    Arthur is contracted through to the end of the 2015 World Cup, and said he had the full backing of the Cricket Australia board despite the disastrous tour of India.

    But his biggest test is yet to come, with back-to-back Ashes series sure to test Australia’s development under Arthur.

    “I’m under no illusions. We need to deliver and we need to deliver in the next year to really have said we’ve made a proper go at this job,” Arthur said.

    “It’s actually the best time to be a coach in these tough times when you’ve got a young team.

    “Because if you believe in those players, you’ll see those players develop in front of you.

    “That’s going to be really rewarding for us.

    “We are firmly on track for the Ashes – there’s no doubt about that.

    “I was always really worried about the conditions in India, especially with a group of young players.

    “With the Ashes, the conditions are a lot closer to what we’re comfortable with.

    “Our pace bowlers will be a real factor in England, and that’s a real strength of ours.”

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (15)

    • March 27th 2013 @ 8:55am
      TedS said | March 27th 2013 @ 8:55am | ! Report

      Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me. Mickey is a wannabe. How come the greatest Cricketing nation of modern era has to look at a disgruntled South African to coach its cricket team?

      • March 27th 2013 @ 9:46am
        Praveen said | March 27th 2013 @ 9:46am | ! Report

        +1

      • March 27th 2013 @ 3:45pm
        Nick Inatey said | March 27th 2013 @ 3:45pm | ! Report

        What does his nationality have anything to do with this?

    • March 27th 2013 @ 9:27am
      Red Kev said | March 27th 2013 @ 9:27am | ! Report

      Any coach that thinks Maxwell is test standard is not the right man for the job.

      • March 27th 2013 @ 9:54am
        Praveen said | March 27th 2013 @ 9:54am | ! Report

        No doubt I would have gone for either khawaja or Doherty in the final test against India, it’s good we made this mistake before the ashes

        • March 27th 2013 @ 11:04am
          Stephen said | March 27th 2013 @ 11:04am | ! Report

          +1, but lets put this sad saga behind us and look forward to the ashes

        • April 6th 2013 @ 10:35pm
          Clavers said | April 6th 2013 @ 10:35pm | ! Report

          In this day and age, a test series against India or South Africa is just as important as an Ashes series. It’s not the 1930s anymore.

    • March 27th 2013 @ 10:05am
      Sailosi said | March 27th 2013 @ 10:05am | ! Report

      This Arthur bloke is starting to $%#@ me.

      Comment left via The Roar’s iPhone app. Download it now [http://itunes.apple.com/au/app/the-roar/id327174726?mt=8].

    • March 27th 2013 @ 1:03pm
      sittingbison said | March 27th 2013 @ 1:03pm | ! Report

      Jeebus talking about skinfolds. In cricket. In INDIA of all places.

      The homeworkgate before the 3rd Test scuttled the entire tour. It could easily have been sorted out privately, and dealt with after the tour. It is singularly the most idiotic thing I have ever heard of in Australian cricket (some of the amateur era administrators in swimming and athletics come close).

      The guy is a dolt, and worse lets his ego hold sway. We have to get rid of him NOW but alas the entire CA from captain to coach to NSP to high performance manager to CEO are all in major CYA mode and not a single thing will be done about this most embarrassing of performances

      • March 27th 2013 @ 1:35pm
        Talisman said | March 27th 2013 @ 1:35pm | ! Report

        “We are firmly on track for the Ashes – there’s no doubt about that.”
        After a 4-0 drubbing only a fool could make a statement like that – Arthur’s just got to go.

        • March 27th 2013 @ 4:57pm
          Disco said | March 27th 2013 @ 4:57pm | ! Report

          +1

          • March 28th 2013 @ 9:37pm
            Sandy said | March 28th 2013 @ 9:37pm | ! Report

            +2

    • March 27th 2013 @ 4:28pm
      Brendon said | March 27th 2013 @ 4:28pm | ! Report

      If we were so keen to be number one in the world, why did we rest our whole attack at the WACA in the summer?

    • March 28th 2013 @ 8:37pm
      Scifi said | March 28th 2013 @ 8:37pm | ! Report

      Paging Mickey Arthurs to the HR department! Bring your desk items in a bag, mate!

      He should be shown the door! No more press conferences please…

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