Former New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum has been appointed as England’s men’s team head coach, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced on Thursday.
The 40-year-old McCullum will start his role with the Test side in the home series against New Zealand, starting on June 2 at Lord’s, subject to obtaining a necessary work visa.
“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,” Managing Director of England’s men’s cricket Rob Key said in an ECB statement.
McCullum’s appointment comes after Chris Silverwood departed from the role, following the 4-0 drubbing in the Ashes away. It means the England men’s coaching duties have now been split, with separate coaches for red and white-ball cricket.
The former Kiwi cricketer has coaching experience in franchise cricket, currently serving as the head coach of the Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL. McCullum was also the head coach of the CPL franchise Trinbago Knight Riders.
As the head coach of the England Test side, McCullum’s first order of business will be improving England’s position in the ICC World Test Championship 2021-23 table. England are currently languishing at the bottom after a string of poor results.
“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,” said McCullum on his appointment.
“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,” he added.
The new head coach was full of praise for England’s new Test captain Ben Stokes and stated that he was looking forward to working with him.
“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 said.
England have a blockbuster summer of Test cricket ahead, with a home series against McCullum’s home country New Zealand, the conclusion of the five-match Test series against India and also a three-match series against South Africa.