England Cricket: Everyone would assume Brendon McCullum would be the choice to coach England’s limited-overs sides, but now that he’s in charge of the Test side, he’s not afraid to draw inspiration from the team’s success in white-ball cricket.
“I looked at what England has achieved in white-ball cricket, and what Eoin Morgan has done is what I’m hoping to do with Ben Stokes,” he said at Lord’s when he was introduced as Chris Siverwood’s replacement.
“How come the same thing can’t happen on the Test side?” Ben aspires to achieve the same mental freedom and to reduce some of the noise that comes with playing at this level.
The Ashes defeat in Australia resulted in Silverwood’s dismissal as a coach, and the series defeat in the West Indies that followed was the tipping point for Joe Root as captain. The change in order reflected England’s dwindling fortunes, which are now ranked as low as sixth.
McCullum, who has no first-class coaching experience, stated that he spoke with Andy Flower and Trevor Bayliss, both of whom successfully transitioned into the England coaching ecosystem despite coming from different backgrounds.
While Test cricket remains popular among some fans, McCullum believes that England must have one of the best teams in the world if the format is to be passed down to future generations.
“T20 and franchise cricket have given me a wonderful life, and I will be eternally grateful.” But Test cricket is and has always been the pinnacle for me. Many people in the sport now focus solely on T20, but wouldn’t it be great if, in a few years, the next generation of young players made Test cricket their top priority? Not only is the format appealing, but the personalities involved are positive role models, and the game appears to be enjoyable,” McCullum said.