ENG vs NZ | 'Ben Stokes' aspirations as a leader align to his personality' - Coach McCullum

Umaima Saeed

Umaima Saeed

Author| Jun 23, 2:30 PM

PC: Twitter
PC: Twitter

England's new coach Brendon McCullum has opined that the England captaincy has come at the right time for all-rounder Ben Stokes, while admitting that he initially was sceptical about how successful the new captain-coach duo would be.

McCullum was appointed as coach of the England Test side in May when he was in India to coach IPL franchise Kolkata Knight Riders. Stokes was named as England a few days before that after Joe Root stepped down from the post. The 31-year-old, who succeeded Alastair Cook as captain in 2017, ended his tenure with the most wins (27) as England's Test skipper. But over the last year, the Test side lost quite a few series under Root's captaincy, including the Ashes.

"I think where Stokesy's at in his career, and his aspirations as a leader and where he sees his team needs to go, it aligns beautifully to his personality and also to mine," McCullum told SENZ Radio.

"The danger probably was that we'd be too similar. But I think both of us have got such motivation to try and improve the side that we give and take in the areas we need to, and we try and ensure that we surround ourselves with leaders within the group as well, both on the field and also support staff who can fill in some of the gaps where we may not be as strong as well," McCullum added.

Heaping further praise on Stokes, McCullum said that Stokes has been delivering powerful and impactful messages in the dressing room and that the captain and coach's methods are aligned.

"I couldn't have asked for a more receptive dressing room than what we've had in the last two Test matches. But a lot of that is down to the skipper; his way and his methods are very much aligned to mine."

England, who won the first two Tests against New Zealand, are currently playing the third and final match in Headingley, Leeds, and will be looking to register a whitewash.

  • Ben Stokes
  • Brendon McCullum
  • ENG vs NZ 2022

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