Former New Zealand cricketer Brendon McCullum has been appointed as the head coach of England’s men’s test team, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced on Thursday.
Issuing a statement, the ECB said: “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.
Notably, New Zealand born McCullum is currently serving as the head coach of the Indian Premier League (IPL) franchise Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR). He had previously coached Trinbago Knight Riders to the 2020 Caribbean Premier League title.
Commenting on the development, 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 would 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,” he added.
On the other hand, an elated McCullum said: “I would 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 have 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,” he added.
McCullum featured in 101 Tests for New Zealand and was the Test skipper of the Black Caps from 2012 to his international retirement in 2016. He will arrive in the UK later this month after the completion of his assignment wit the KKR, who have two matches left in their IPL league stage.