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Coach likes Aussie players’ aggression
Australia’s Test players are being challenged by captain Michael Clarke’s aggressive captaincy and that’s just how coach Mickey Arthur wants it to be. Clarke’s dedication to risking defeat in pursuit of victory has never been more evident than on the current tour of the Caribbean, where he has twice declared in a bid to earn a win.
The gamble paid off in the first Test in Barbados when Clarke became the first Australian captain to declare behind in the first innings with a fully fit team and then claim victory. And his decision to end Australia's second innings in Trinidad last week brought life to the rain-marred second Test only for the weather to close in once more.
“That is something that Michael and I share—I’d rather lose a Test match trying to win it than just play dull cricket, because then you don’t learn anything about your players,” Arthur said. “You want to see players stand up in pressure situations. I’d rather that we went all out to win a game rather than just let a game meander. You also want to put players under pressure, you want to take them a little bit out of their comfort zones.”
And Arthur expects his charges to once again go all out for a big finish in the third Test in Dominica this week, the final Test hit-out for Australia until next summer. “We want to finish off the summer on a high,” Clarke said. “We think we’ve had a pretty good summer and we certainly don’t want to let it slip now.
“One game to go in Dominica, we want to maintain standards and finish off on a really good note. And then we can tick the box on having a really good Test summer.”
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