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Ashes: Mickey Arthur claims tourists' goal is to win in Australia

Mickey Arthur: Left feeling hurt watching current series

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Former Australian coach Mickey Arthur says the tourists aim in this Ashes series was to gain enough intelligence and confidence to win the return series back home.

Arthur's contract was terminated only 16 days before the first Test at Trent Bridge and the tourists have gone on to trail 3-0 in the series before this week's fifth Test.

While the tourists never set out to lose, the South African has revealed, along with skipper Michael Clarke, the intention was to push England close and then win back in Australia, with the first Test starting in Brisbane in November.

He told ABC: "We had to take the pain now to get reward at the end of the day. We had a goal that I'll reveal (and it) was...we wanted to try and push England really hard in England, but we wanted to win in Australia.

"This is what Michael and I wanted to do. We didn't go into the series ever to lose it but we wanted to develop enough intelligence on all the England players.

"We were going to push them close and give the players and our team the confidence to see that England could get beaten and then go for them in Australia. That's how we wanted to go about our escapade there."


Arthur, who has subsequently reached a settlement with Cricket Australia and has taken a job as director of cricket at Christ Church Grammar School in Perth, says watching the current series has left him feeling hurt.

"It hurts me. I've watched every ball of the Ashes," he said. "I'm going to be sitting there in front of the TV again. Everyone, certainly my family, are saying 'let it go' but I say 'but I can't'. I've spent too much of my time with these boys, trying to make them better cricketers. I've got to watch it.

"Certainly by the second session my family has gone to bed and it's just me in front of the TV and I am talking to the television.

"The funny thing is as a coach, with a trained eye and having known the psyche of all the players, I can sit and watch something developing and know what's going to happen an over later. I'm going 'don't do that again, keep hitting straight, they're trying to set you up with the lbw...oh across the line, damn, not again'. That's exactly how I feel."