Former New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum has said that England captain Joe Root is a wonderful guy but he lacks leadership qualities. McCullum’s comments have come after England’s humiliating nine-wicket loss against Australia in the first Test of the five-match series on Saturday at the Gabba in Brisbane.
Root has been criticized for two decisions- electing to bat first on a green surface and leaving out James Anderson and Stuart Broad. The team got all-out on 147 in just 50.1 overs on day one and missed the services of Broad and Anderson as the Aussies went on to pile up the score of 425 runs.
Trailing by 278 runs, England ended up amassing 220/2 with Root and Dawid Malan scoring half-centuries at the end of day three. Both batsmen got out early on the next day and rested on the batting crumbled as they go all-out on 297. The Pat Cummins-led were left to chase only 20 runs to win the game. They won the game after losing the wicket of debutant Alex Carey.
Brendon McCullum feels Joe Root lacks leadership qualities
“I think Joe Root is a wonderful guy, an outstanding cricketer and they talk about him as a very good leader. I haven’t really seen it,” said McCullum, who has played over 100 Tests and scored nearly 6,500 runs, told SENZ Breakfast on Monday.
The former Kiwi skipper opined that England missed the chances as Australia started flexing. He also added that the Joe root-led side has lost seven games in the longest format in the calendar year. England has lost one game against New Zealand and five games against India in two different series played in Feb-March and August-September.
“England had opportunities, they had their chances, but they just weren’t really strong enough. When the pressure came on and Australia started to flex, England just went missing. That’s their seventh Test loss in the calendar year which is just remarkable. Their worst ever has been eight and it’s been some time since that.
“The worst ever in the history of Test cricket is nine by Bangladesh. It’s been a pretty dire Test match year for England,” opined McCullum.
The 40-year-year further added the only player who has scored the most runs for the three lions is Joe Root.
“There’s only really one player who is scoring any runs for them and that’s the skipper Joe Root,” the 40-year-old added.
The Dunedin-born also opines that if a team gives Australia any chance, they will take the game away. He also said that Root lets the game drift away from his side.
“To me, leadership is not just about being able to make the right calls at the right time tactically as a skipper. He’s not, to me, up there as one of the best in the world at it. He allows games to drift at times. When they had Australia on the ropes the other day, he allowed the game to drift. If you give Australia any chance of being able to fight their way back they will.
“What is of more concern is that leadership is not just about being the best player in the team. Leadership is about inspiring those around you to achieve higher success than they would otherwise achieve,” he said.