ENG v SA 2022: “Didn't actually want the job” - Brendon McCullum after England wrap successful home summer

England have played aggressive brand of cricket in the longest format ever since McCullum took over.

Brendon McCullum | Getty

When given the opportunity to coach England's national side in Test matches, Brendon McCullum, the former coach of IPL team Kolkata Knight Riders, confessed that he didn’t want it. He did, however, acknowledge that he has been enjoying the role.

"Well, I didn't actually want the [England] job! But now I've got it, I'm loving it! Absolutely I am, and it's certainly different to what I've ever done before," McCullum remarked following the start of the third Test match between England and South Africa.

"I'm loving the opportunity to work with some of the best players in the world. I always looked at English cricket and thought there was an immense amount of talent. I didn't quite realize how much talent there is and how good these guys are and the way they think about the game," he further added.

At the Oval, England defeated South Africa in the final match of their three-Test series on Monday, September 12. The English team has won every Test series during this English summer under the guidance of McCullum and the leadership of Ben Stokes.

The legendary New Zealand cricketer noted that working with Stokes has been a true pleasure while adding that the southpaw is a natural leader

"It's been an absolute pleasure to work alongside them, and I've particularly enjoyed working alongside the skipper [Stokes]. He's a rare human being and an incredible person," he said.

"He's a great thinker of the game, his messaging has been excellent as well. I thought he'd be good, I didn't realize he'd be this good. A natural leader. It's a wonderful fit for him," he added.

McCullum stated that his goal as England's coach is to revive the enthusiasm of Test cricket and make the game relevant in the contemporary era.

"We almost wanted to take results out of play - I know we're judged by them - but almost take them out of play and play the style of cricket that is authentic to [Ben] Stokesy's leadership and the guys that are in the side, and I felt we executed that nicely," he told Sky Sports.

He stated that although a team will be judged by how matches they win, they wanted a broader perspective.

"We're well aware you're going to be judged by results, but for us, it was a little bit bigger than that," he said.

"When you get an opportunity such as this, and the responsibility of being in these positions of leadership, you look at where Test cricket is around the world and how important it is to all of those who have played the game beforehand, and the relevance of it in international cricket.

"For us, it was a matter of trying to bring a bit of enjoyment back, try and bring the fans in to make sure they're enjoying Test cricket, and hopefully provide a bit more relevance to a game which has probably been under a little bit of pressure of late. That was the big goal and it will continue to be so moving forward," the England head coach concluded.

The Stokes-led team produced a remarkable comeback by winning the second and third games by an innings and 85 runs and 9 wickets, respectively, after losing the first Test against the Proteas by an innings and 12 runs.




By Abhishek Ghan - 13 Sep, 2022

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