Cricket Australia Items/news/2012/7/9/arthur-wants-more-mongrel-from-australia

Arthur wants more 'mongrel'

UPDATED 12 February, 2013 3:58PM AEST | by Omnisport 21

Coach Mickey Arthur has called on Australia to stand up to England's bullying in Tuesday's final one-day international at Old Trafford.

Australia lost their opening two games by 15 runs and six wickets before game three was abandoned without a ball bowled due to rain.

England then took an unassailable 3-0 lead in the five-match series after cruising to an eight-wicket victory at Chester-le-Street on Sunday.

And in the wake of their defeat to the hosts, Arthur has urged his team to show some 'presence' and avoid a 4-0 series drubbing at the hands of their Ashes rivals, despite concerns over the fitness of Brett Lee and Shane Watson.

The pair are continuing to have their calf injuries assessed by team medical staff and Mitchell Starc, who is in England playing for Yorkshire, has been called up to the squad as cover for a bowling attack that has managed just 10 wickets in three defeats.

"I want to see a bit of mongrel come Tuesday, I really do," the former Western Warriors coach said.

"I think we've been a bit submissive this whole series, we've allowed ourselves to be bullied, and we're better than that.

"I don't think we've had a presence this series.

"I'm talking absolute presence when batters are out there, like the presence our Test team had against India. When we walked on that field there was body language, we were strong, we were decisive, there was that presence.

"But we haven't had that presence in our one-day side.

"We didn't really get that presence in our one-day side through the international summer at home as well, and that's something we've been fiddling with, trying to get.

"We just don't seem to have the answers at the moment."

Arthur added something was missing from the one-day setup but was at a loss to explain what.

"I think our Test team is really good, it's really settled, and it's got that hard edge," he said.

"The Twenty20 team, we haven't really had that much time together, but the one-day team, there's just that something missing.

"I've said it all through our home summer, there's just something missing.

"I'm not sure what it is. Is it character, is it ambition? I'm not sure - there's just something clearly missing.

"I've challenged the players, I'll always be honest and I'll say it how it is. I'm really looking for a response."

However, the Australian coach refused to criticise the training and preparation of his side, who will return to England for the Ashes next June.

"The players are putting in - there's absolutely no issue with that. We train and we train incredibly well," he said.

"I thought our preparation leading up to the first ODI was as good as I've ever seen a team prepare. We were ready - we were 100 per cent ready to go.

"The disappointing thing for me is not seeing anybody transform their training potential ... into something substantial in the middle."

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia

First Posted 09 July, 2012 7:26AM AEST

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