Latest: Mickey Arthur all praises for Pakistan after they reclaim top ODI spot
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Mickey Arthur (R) speaks to the Pakistan team in the dressing room after the third ODI against Afghanistan. — PCB

Mickey Arthur, director of Pakistan’s men’s cricket team, has showered praise on the Green Shirts after they reclaimed the top spot in the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) one-day international (ODI) rankings after whitewashing Afghanistan on Saturday. 

“There is a cake here with the number one on it. This signifies all the hard work that you guys have put in over a period of time to get to number one in the world,” Arthur told the Men in Green in the dressing room post-match. 

“Never ever take this for granted,” he stressed. “Let’s celebrate this tonight because there has been a lot of blood, sweat and tears that have gone into this. This is just the start, we are in operation World Cup.”

Pakistan’s next assignment is the Asia Cup, which begins on August 30. Meanwhile, the World Cup will be held in India in October-November this year.

Chasing a target of 269 runs in the third ODI, Afghanistan were dismissed for 209 runs in 48.4 overs which helped Pakistan register victory by 59 runs.

Leg-spinner Shadab Khan was the pick of the Pakistan bowlers with figures of 3-42 in 10 overs.

Mohammad Nawaz, Faheem Ashraf and Shaheen Afridi claimed two wickets each.

It was a sorry batting display by Afghanistan as the highest scorer in their innings was tailender Mujeeb Ur Rahman, who scored a career-best 64 runs in 37 balls. His explosive knock, which was only able to delay the inevitable, included five fours and as many maximums.

Shahidullah scored 37 runs, meanwhile Riaz Hassan scored 34 runs.

Earlier, Pakistan had set a target of 269 runs after winning the toss and deciding to bat first in the third and final ODI of the series against Afghanistan in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

Pakistan finished at 268-8 in 50 overs after Mohammad Rizwan (67) and Babar Azam (60) scored fifties.

Azam and Rizwan added 110 runs in 145 balls for the third wicket.

Meanwhile, Mohammad Nawaz (30 off 25) and Agha Salman (38 not out in 31) provided impetus at the backend of the innings with 61 runs in 47 balls for the seventh wicket.

Gulbadin Naib and Fareed Ahmad claimed two wickets each for Afghanistan

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