Former New Zealand cricketer Brendon McCullum, who is currently head coach of Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR), has reportedly emerged as the favourite to become the new England Test team coach.
As per a report in mirror.co.uk, the 40-year-old could be announced as the red-ball coach before the end of this week.
“The 40-year-old could form a dream team partnership with (new England Test skipper) Ben Stokes, as the two men have similar positive outlooks on the game and how to take it forward,” said the report.
Initially, after Chris Silverwood stepped down as England’s chief coach after the recent Ashes debacle, South African opener Gary Kirsten was reportedly the favourite for the Test job. On the other side, McCullum wasbeing seen as a possible white-ball coach due to his limited-overs credentials as a player and his coaching experience with the KKR.
McCullum has played 101 Tests for New Zealand and captained the side on 31 occasions.
The report added that it would be the perfect time for the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) to announce McCullum’s appointment as coach as the Kiwis are all set to begin their tour of England with the opening Test scheduled at Lord’s from June 2.
Meanwhile, another report in Cricbuzz suggested that a formal offer has already been made to the New Zealander by the ECB
“Cricbuzz understands that a formal offer from the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has already been made after negotiations started a few days ago and the announcement is expected within a couple of days. Rob Key, the new Managing Director of the England men’s team, has been in touch with McCullum, who is currently in Mumbai as the head coach of Kolkata Knight Riders franchise in the Indian Premier League (IPL),” the Cricbuzz report said.
However, a ECB spokesperson denied to comment on the matter and said that a call on it would be made by this week.
“We have nothing to say at this stage. The recruitment process is ongoing. A decision is likely this week,” a spokesman for the ECB was quoted as saying by Cricbuzz.