Brendon McCullum appointed England Men's Test Head Coach


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  1. #1
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    Brendon McCullum appointed England Men's Test Head Coach

    Brendon McCullum appointed England Men's Test Head Coach

    The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced today that it has appointed Brendon McCullum as England Men's Test Head Coach.

    McCullum, 40, will be in place to start his role for next month's LV= Insurance three-match Test series against New Zealand, which gets underway at Lord's from 2 June, subject to obtaining the necessary work visa.

    The ECB's selection panel of Chief Executive Officer Tom Harrison, Managing Director of England's Men's Cricket Rob Key, Strategic Adviser Andrew Strauss and Performance Director Mo Bobat unanimously agreed that he was the outstanding candidate for the role, having impressed during the competitive interview process.

    New Zealand born McCullum currently works as Head Coach of Indian Premier League franchise Kolkata Knight Riders and previously coached Trinbago Knight Riders to the 2020 Caribbean Premier League title. He also had an exemplary playing career that saw him earn 101 Test caps and was Test captain of the Black Caps from 2012 to his international retirement in 2016.

    Commenting on the appointment of McCullum, Rob Key, said:

    "We are delighted to confirm Brendon as England Men's Test Head Coach. It has been a real privilege to get to know him and understand his views and vision for the game. I believe his appointment will be good for England's Test team.

    "He has a recent history of changing cricket culture and environments for the better, and I believe he is the person to do that for England's red-ball cricket.

    "We were incredibly fortunate to have a seriously strong list of quality candidates for the post, with Brendon demonstrating he was our number one choice.

    "I'd like to thank Tom Harrison and the ECB Board for their support in this process.

    "I believe in Brendon and Ben Stokes - a formidable coach and captain partnership. Time for us all to buckle up and get ready for the ride."

    Speaking about his appointment, McCullum, added:

    "I'd like to say how pleased I am to be given this opportunity to positively contribute to England's Test cricket set-up and move the team forward into a more successful era.

    "In taking this role on, I am acutely aware of the significant challenges the team faces at present, and I strongly believe in my ability to help the team emerge as a stronger force once we've confronted them head-on.

    "I've enjoyed several robust conversations with Rob Key about the direction of travel for the team and have found his enthusiasm contagious. I'm no stranger to bringing about change within a team environment, and I can't wait to get started.

    "Ben Stokes is the perfect character to inspire change around him, and I look forward to working closely with him to build a successful unit around us."

    McCullum is due to arrive in the UK later this month. The Knight Riders have two matches left in their IPL group campaign on Saturday against Sunrisers Hyderabad and complete their season on Wednesday 18 May against Lucknow Super Giants.


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  2. #2
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    As background, McCullum has signed a four-year agreement.


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  3. #3
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    Stokes-McCullum, two strong personalities. Yet somehow I feel they are/will be on the same wavelength. I think this could go two ways and pretty quickly. Either they become good buddies or their egos clash. I am leaning towards the former.

    I think McCullum has the ability to do things out of the box. Which could be beneficial for Eng. Though have to say that it has not helped KKR in any big way.

    Speaking of KKR, is he going to split his time between KKR and the Eng. job?

  4. #4
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    A decision that only ECB can explain and justify, not sure what was the thought process behind this left-field move.

    - He was one of the most aggressive cricketers of his era and transformed New Zealand cricket with his expansive approach. Why is he not fit to be the England LOI coach as well?

    - Englandís struggles in Test cricket have been put down to the lack of discipline in their batting approach - except Root and Stokes, no batsman seems to have the concentration to play long innings.

    How is McCullum going to rectify that? As a batsman, he was the total opposite of what the England Test side needs right now and he has no tangible coaching experience at FC level.

    This seems to be a disastrous that could go south very quickly.

  5. #5
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    He would have been ideal as a test coach for a tuk tuk team like Pakistan.

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    It won't be boring that's for sure.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mamoon View Post
    A decision that only ECB can explain and justify, not sure what was the thought process behind this left-field move.

    - He was one of the most aggressive cricketers of his era and transformed New Zealand cricket with his expansive approach. Why is he not fit to be the England LOI coach as well?

    - Englandís struggles in Test cricket have been put down to the lack of discipline in their batting approach - except Root and Stokes, no batsman seems to have the concentration to play long innings.

    How is McCullum going to rectify that? As a batsman, he was the total opposite of what the England Test side needs right now and he has no tangible coaching experience at FC level.

    This seems to be a disastrous that could go south very quickly.
    Totally agree with you on this, this has all the making of disaster waiting to happen, but anyways English team is already at rock bottom in tets performances so will be hard to get any more worse, but logically there seems no logic in these apportionments.

  8. #8
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    Surprised by this.

    I would have thought they would have gone for an experienced coach after England's struggles in Tests recently.

    Whilst McCullum was a great player, he's hardly set the world alight with his coaching spells.



  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mamoon View Post
    A decision that only ECB can explain and justify, not sure what was the thought process behind this left-field move.

    - He was one of the most aggressive cricketers of his era and transformed New Zealand cricket with his expansive approach. Why is he not fit to be the England LOI coach as well?

    - England’s struggles in Test cricket have been put down to the lack of discipline in their batting approach - except Root and Stokes, no batsman seems to have the concentration to play long innings.

    How is McCullum going to rectify that? As a batsman, he was the total opposite of what the England Test side needs right now and he has no tangible coaching experience at FC level.

    This seems to be a disastrous that could go south very quickly.
    Agreed....don't see this ending well for Eng

  10. #10
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    Quite like this, someone who's captained a test team in a turn around period and generally comes across as being quite knowledgeable about the game with some experience playing for several different counties too. Also good to hear he specifically wanted the challenge of the test team rather than settling for the 'easy' job of limited overs coach.
    Last edited by HitWicket; 12th May 2022 at 22:42.

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    Brendon McCullum was known for hitting sixes against bouncers with cross bat shots.

    England needs this in test cricket. When you can't defend the red ball then you need to attack more.

    McCullum will ensure England's batsmen don't lose their white ball form at any point. Master stroke by ECB.

  12. #12
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    Interesting.
    Iím a fan of this appointment.

    Plus remember that England are an unremarkable 6th in the Test rankings and propping up the WTC table, so itís not like they have anything to lose by taking a bit of a risk.

  13. #13
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    for Loi

    made sense
    as a test headcoach
    huh

  14. #14
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    Poor decison.

    What England needs is to play each format on its merit i.e. Test Cricket like Test Cricket and the Limited overs format accordingly. Mccullam would have made sense for the White ball squads but not for test cricket.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Savak View Post
    Poor decison.

    What England needs is to play each format on its merit i.e. Test Cricket like Test Cricket and the Limited overs format accordingly. Mccullam would have made sense for the White ball squads but not for test cricket.
    You're assuming his approach as a coach will be to make everyone play in the same mould that he did.

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    Brendon McCullum a 'bold and inspiring' hire as England men's Test coach, says Michael Atherton as he praises Ben Stokes pairing

    Michael Atherton his his say on Brendon McCullum appointment and Ben Stokes link-up; He adds: "I think Rob Key is looking for Brendon to inspire, to lead, for some of his character to rub off on an England dressing room that has had a pretty difficult time of it."

    Sky Sports Cricket's Michael Atherton says Brendon McCullum is a "bold and inspiring choice" as England's new men's Test coach, and believes he and Ben Stokes will form a "fearless and aggressive" combination.

    McCullum, the former New Zealand captain, was confirmed as Chris Silverwood's successor on Thursday, marking another key hire for England after Rob Key's arrival as managing director and Stokes' appointment as Test captain.

    McCullum lacks experience as a red-ball coach - he is currently in charge of the Indian Premier League's Kolkata Knight Riders franchise - but Athers gave his approval of the appointment of the Kiwi legend, 40.

    "I think it's a very bold and imaginative choice, and an inspiring choice from Rob Key," Atherton said.

    "Giving Ben Stokes the captaincy was the obvious choice and so his first big decision was to give Brendon McCullum the Test job.

    "A week or so ago I don't think that was on anybody's radars, so he's not made the obvious choice here, but I think it's a very bold choice."

    McCullum has vast experience as an international player and captain but little as a coach, with his post-playing career so far having taken him to the IPL and the Caribbean Premier League.

    But Athers added: "I don't think it's a concern. Some other people within the professional coaching environment may think so.

    "His limited coaching experience has come in the IPL with the Kolkata Nightriders and in the CPL with their sister team. But he did play 100 Tests, scored a Test match triple hundred and he was very significant in Test cricket in his own right.

    "As captain, he really led New Zealand into a brave new era, from the moment he took over - in Cape Town 2013 - the very first innings New Zealand were bowled out for 45. It was a really low ebb and a very difficult transition from Ross Taylor.

    "But after that, he led boldly and fearlessly, and transformed that New Zealand team to the point which he laid the foundations for Kane Williamson's team that became World Test Champions, and have been very significant players in ICC events. So as a captain and as a leader, he's got plenty of experience in Test Match cricket."

    McCullum joins forces with Stokes to form a pivotal combination in England's bid to revitalise their Test fortunes, and Athers believes the pair will mesh together well.

    "He's a nice fit with Stokes, they both approach the game and play the game in a similar manner and they'll look to give very clear message, captain and coach, and show they're singing from the same hymn sheet to a team you now expect to be given a bit of freedom and licence to play.

    "Neither Stokes or McCullum are shy characters when it comes to playing the game of cricket, they like to take the game on and play it aggressively.

    "One assumes that McCullum as a coach is going to be very similar to McCullum as a player and captain."

    Athers also highlighted the two reasons he believes Key opted for McCullum.

    "One is the combination of Stokes," he said. "There's a chapter in Rob Key's autobiography where he talks about coaching and he says that the combination between captain and coach is absolutely critical.

    "I think he wanted somebody that he feels Stokes could work with. I think Stokes will have a lot of regard and respect for McCullum for what he did in the game, so it's a good combination.

    "And secondly, Rob Key will know what McCullum did with the New Zealand team in that 2013 to 2016 period, and will hope that he can inspire England to do the same. We know that McCullum has got experience of transforming a situation and a group of players.

    "I don't think you're looking at a guy that's going to be a particularly technical coach. I think Rob is looking for Brendon to inspire, to lead, for some of his character to rub off on an England dressing room that has had a pretty difficult time of it for two years."

    Athers continued: "I think there's a sense of optimism on the back of Stokes being made England captain, and that optimism has been given a bit more of a boost with McCullum."

    McCullum is set to be in place for the first Test against world champions New Zealand at Lord's on June 2, with England looking to bounce back with their new hires after a dismal winter.

    Asked what players England will be looking for, Athers said: "One assumes that the Stokes-McCullum way is going to be on the aggressive side.

    "They'll have to decide what kind of players they want to have, we've already heard from Ben to say that he wants James Anderson and Stuart Broad back.

    "They've then got 400 first class cricketers to have a look at."

    He added: "I think the top order has been England's biggest problem over the last two years. That top order has been particularly vulnerable.

    "We know Root is going to go No 4, Stokes is going to go No 6, so the questions are around No 3 and No 5 particularly, if they want to keep the same opening combination that they had in the Caribbean. Zak Crawley's been short of runs at the start of the year, Alex Lees has done alright, though he may not fit the kind of template that they're looking for.

    "You only really know Root and Stokes' positions, so there are plenty of options as we come to the fifth and sixth round of the County Championship games, and opportunities for players to impress."

    England are expected to make another appointment next week with a new white ball coach.

    On that process, Athers admitted Paul Collingwood was the favourite but that England were right to "open up the process and speak to many people as they can".

    "There's pretty strong word that Matthew Mott, who has been in charge of the Australian women's team, has been a strong candidate and has interviewed well," said Athers.

    "But I think Paul Collingwood is the favourite and I wouldn't be against that choice,

    "I think he's highly regarded and knows his stuff, and would form a good relationship with Stokes, Eoin Morgan and Joss Buttler - that senior group."

    https://www.skysports.com/cricket/ne...stokes-pairing

  17. #17
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    This is going to either go brilliantly or terribly. There will be no middle ground here. McCullum and Stokes are both going to encourage the players to be aggressive and fearless. You would think that the key problem they have is a distinct lack of talent in the batting ranks.

    However, New Zealand is a tiny country with a tiny population and therefore a limited talent pool. That didn’t stop McCullum from making the NZ players believe in themselves and play to their potential. Maybe he and Stokes can do that for England.

    Given McCullum’s almost non-existent coaching experience, it seems to me that England have given up the quest to try and improve players technically. McCullum won’t be able to help fix anyone’s technical flaws because he’s got zilch training or experience in doing so. So the hope is that he will teach the players to go all guns blazing, which puts the opposition under so much pressure that all technical flaws get hidden nicely.

    Interesting experiment. Let’s see how it goes!

  18. #18
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    MacCullum is not a positive but reckless coach. England will suffer even further

  19. #19
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    Following his surprise appointment as England Test head coach, Brendon McCullum is facing several crucial decisions that could dictate his success in the highly challenging role.

    The former New Zealand captain is taking over a team that has managed just one win in their last 17 Test matches, with 11 losses in that time, and can only point to two guaranteed names on team sheet (fitness permitting) for McCullum's first Test in charge on June 2.

    Taking on a Test coaching role for the first time after having worked in franchise cricket since his retirement in 2019, McCullum will need to rely heavily on his playing experience as he navigates his way through a period of major upheaval for English men's game.

    The man who has appointed him, Rob Key, only took over as the ECB's managing director of England men's cricket last month, while Ben Stokes was confirmed as Joe Root's replacement as Test skipper just a couple of weeks ago.

    McCullum, who appears set to finish up his role as head coach of the Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League on May 18, will be expected within a week of that date to name his squad for England's three-match series against New Zealand.

    Form a Vaughan-Fletcher like bond with Stokes

    A hugely important factor in rebuilding England's red-ball side will be the relationship between head coach and captain.

    England's best teams of the 21st century were aided by close partnerships, with Michael Vaughan and Duncan Fletcher combining in the early 2000s, before Andrew Strauss and Andy Flower led a formidable unit at the start of the next decade.

    In a 2015 interview, McCullum discussed the importance of the relationship between a captain and coach to a team's success.
    As Stokes is within the England setup, McCullum was a hugely popular figure within the New Zealand dressing room throughout his playing career, and it's hard to imagine the two affable figures struggling to strike up a bond.

    McCullum, who broke records in both international and franchise cricket throughout his playing career, can also empathise with Stokes on the challenges the modern cross-format cricketer faces.

    Fill the gaps in England's middle order

    Stokes has already announced that he will bat at No 6, while he also confirmed that former captain Root will return to his favoured position at No 4. That leaves four other top-order batting slots with a certain amount of uncertainty around them.

    England appear likely to start the summer with Alex Lees and Zak Crawley opening, with the duo set to be given further opportunity having ousted Haseeb Hameed and Rory Burns following their struggles during the Ashes.

    However, there is extreme uncertainty around who will get the nod at No 3 and No 5, with Stokes himself having urged players to "put their hands up" for the roles.

    The most likely candidates for the positions would appear to be Jonny Bairstow, Dan Lawrence, Ollie Pope and Dawid Malan, while Lancashire's Josh Bohannon could force his way into contention for a Test debut if he can continue to score runs in the County Championship.

    Constant changes to personnel during England's hopeless run of form with the bat has failed to improve the situation, so regardless of who is selected, McCullum and his coaching team will need to provide strong technical and mental support if they are to be successful.

    Foakes, Bairstow or a return for Buttler behind the stumps?

    A factor that could impact McCullum's selections further up the order will be who he chooses as wicket-keeper.

    You may have forgotten that McCullum began his career as a hugely successful wicket-keeper-batter, before back issues forced him to give up the role in Tests, and eventually shorter formats.

    His expertise behind the stumps puts him in a strong position to choose between Bairstow, Jos Buttler and Ben Foakes.

    Buttler was dropped for the tour of the West Indies, but with McCullum fresh from watching him star for the Rajasthan Royals in the IPL, there could be a temptation to give the 31-year-old another go.

    Centuries for Bairstow in the final Ashes Test and first match in the West Indies would appear to give him a strong chance of being included, but McCullum might think the best way to get him in the team is with the gloves.

    Undoubtedly the best glove-man of the three is Foakes, but his failure to go past 50 across six innings in the West Indies has left him vulnerable.

    Keep England's fast bowlers healthy

    Key and Stokes have already made noises to suggest England's legendary bowling duo Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad, who were also dropped for the tour of the West Indies, have strong chances of being included come the first Test against New Zealand on June 2.

    Remarkably, Anderson, who turns 40 in July, and Broad, who turns 36 in June, might be the healthiest fast-bowling options McCullum has at his disposal. While he failed to excel in Broad and Anderson's absence in the Caribbean, Chris Woakes has been a reliable performer on home soil, but looks set to be unavailable at Lord's.

    Ollie Robinson has shown huge potential during his short international career, but the 28-year-old's body has repeatedly let him down. He must prove to McCullum he is willing to put in the physical work required to enable him to bowl significant spells at full speed

    Then there's the express trio made up of Mark Wood, Jofra Archer and Olly Stone, with the latter appearing to be a non-starter, having most recently been heard spoking about considering retiring from cricket following back surgery.

    Wood was enjoying his best run of fitness in the Test arena before an elbow injury ended his tour of the West Indies, and will surely need to be managed carefully.

    Last, but certainly not least, is Archer. A chronic right elbow injury has prevented him from playing for England in any format since March 2021, but he looks set to return for Sussex in the Vitality Blast later this month. The 27-year-old insists he still wants to play Test cricket, but admits he needs to prove himself in the shorter forms before that can even become a possibility.

    McCullum, along with Key and England's new white-ball head coach, must devise plans to manage England's fast-bowling talent more effectively going forward. Whether it's a reduced schedule, different training regimes, or merely a case of luck, something clearly needs to change.

    SKY


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  20. #20
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    I am cautiously optimistic.

    Strauss and McCullum appears a much more robust management team than Giles and Silverwood, who were out of their depth.

  21. #21
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    Interesting appointment. BMac certainly turned around NZ's fortunes in both white and red ball cricket while he was captain but I'm not sure he is the right man for this England job.

    Englands problems have primarily been that the gap between CC and International cricket has grown pretty wide in recent years. The pitches have been substandard, encouraging trundlers and do not help develop test class batsmen. 18 counties means that talent is diluted and the level of competition is quite low - not an ideal system to groom test class cricketers.

    Another thing I've observed is the lack of patience with young test prospects the world over. Back in the early 90's, Shield Cricket had the highest first class standard and even the most prodigious product of that system- Ponting - took 4 years to crack test cricket.
    I dont see anywhere near that amount of patience shown with youngsters in test cricket by any cricket board.


    'There's a lady who's sure all that glitters is gold'

  22. #22
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    All I can say is that if Pakistan had appointed a coach with no experience of coaching a Test side, there would have been calls for a parliamentary inquiry!


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  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nikhil_cric View Post
    Interesting appointment. BMac certainly turned around NZ's fortunes in both white and red ball cricket while he was captain but I'm not sure he is the right man for this England job.

    Englands problems have primarily been that the gap between CC and International cricket has grown pretty wide in recent years. The pitches have been substandard, encouraging trundlers and do not help develop test class batsmen. 18 counties means that talent is diluted and the level of competition is quite low - not an ideal system to groom test class cricketers.

    Another thing I've observed is the lack of patience with young test prospects the world over. Back in the early 90's, Shield Cricket had the highest first class standard and even the most prodigious product of that system- Ponting - took 4 years to crack test cricket.
    I dont see anywhere near that amount of patience shown with youngsters in test cricket by any cricket board.
    Very true ! Steve Waugh took until 1989 to score a Test hundred. Inzamam did not score a home Test hundred in Pakistan until 1997. I shudder to think of the reaction if social media was around then. People here get twitchy about a player if they've one bad series.

    Quote Originally Posted by MenInG View Post
    All I can say is that if Pakistan had appointed a coach with no experience of coaching a Test side, there would have been calls for a parliamentary inquiry!
    Like Misbah ?

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Markhor View Post
    Very true ! Steve Waugh took until 1989 to score a Test hundred. Inzamam did not score a home Test hundred in Pakistan until 1997. I shudder to think of the reaction if social media was around then. People here get twitchy about a player if they've one bad series.

    Like Misbah ?
    Well the number of people who spoke against Wasim Khan and Mani on this and raised it in Govt committees....


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  25. #25
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    Brendon McCullum says the challenge of improving a team at "rock bottom" and his love of Test cricket made him want to be England men's red-ball coach.

    The New Zealander was appointed on Thursday in his first coaching role in international or red-ball cricket.

    He takes over a side winless in nine Tests, and who have won only one of their past 17 matches.

    "If you are prepared to change your life it has got to be something a bit grunty, a little bit meaty," he said.

    "And the challenge of bringing a team that is rock bottom at the moment and building something long-term, sustainable and successful... that is more where the challenge lay."

    McCullum, who is currently in charge of Indian Premier League side Kolkata Knight Riders, faces his first Test as England head coach at Lord's on 2 June against New Zealand, the team he used to captain.

    He was initially approached for the position of England's white-ball coach but will lead in the format in which he played 101 times for his country between 2004 and 2016.

    "The white-ball didn't interest me as such because the team is flying - they are one of the best in the world and obviously world champions as well," McCullum said on his SENZ radio show.

    "They have Eoin Morgan in there who is a very good friend of mine who has built a structure and system that will continue well after he finishes playing as well.

    "I wasn't interested in a cushy gig.

    "Plus I love Test cricket and the opportunity to coach England and spend a lot of time around those grounds and traditions and history of the game, it became so appealing."

    McCullum, who scored 6,453 Test runs at an average of 38.64 - with 12 hundreds including the fastest Test century of all time - was an aggressive international captain in all formats.

    He captained the Black Caps to the 2015 50-over World Cup final, where they were beaten by Australia, but his spell as Test captain started a resurgence that eventually saw them win the World Test Championship last year under his successor Kane Williamson.

    His appointment continues England's overhaul after a 4-0 Ashes defeat, with Rob Key having taken over as managing director last month and Ben Stokes appointed captain after the resignation of Joe Root.

    They have dropped to sixth in the world rankings and have their lowest points total in the ranking system for 27 years.

    "The style of play has been questioned as well," McCullum said.

    "That gives me the opportunity to try to carve a path with another Kiwi [New Zealand-born Stokes] and try to bring in real freshness.

    "The way Ben Stokes plays the game is similar to how I played the game and love coaching the game.

    "That is to play with a bit of freedom and put pressure back on the opposition.

    "That is a big challenge in itself to try to pull everyone together to get them to believe in the direction we are heading."

    BBC


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  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mamoon View Post
    A decision that only ECB can explain and justify, not sure what was the thought process behind this left-field move.

    - He was one of the most aggressive cricketers of his era and transformed New Zealand cricket with his expansive approach. Why is he not fit to be the England LOI coach as well?

    - England’s struggles in Test cricket have been put down to the lack of discipline in their batting approach - except Root and Stokes, no batsman seems to have the concentration to play long innings.

    How is McCullum going to rectify that? As a batsman, he was the total opposite of what the England Test side needs right now and he has no tangible coaching experience at FC level.

    This seems to be a disastrous that could go south very quickly.
    I agree.

    McCallum should've been the LOI coach. Not sure about Test.


    Bangladeshi Man

  27. #27
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    First coaching job in international cricket and it's the Test team of England that are undergoing a rocky period. Doesn't look promising on paper, but he seems to have wowed them in the interview stages. Let's see if it pans out.


    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

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