Obviously you want to be the number one team in the world: Brendon McCullum

shruti banerjee

| Jun 30, 11:46 AM

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England's red-ball head coach Brendon McCullum said that England's aggressive performances against the World Test Champions New Zealand have warned their rivals in the longer format. However, it was his first stint where they also whitewashed the opponent by 3-0.

However, they had chases like 277, 299 and 296 in victories at Lord's, Trent Bridge and Headingley, respectively, at a rapid rate of 4.54 an over. And, it was a different scene to England's woeful run of just one win in 17 Tests ahead of the campaign against the Black Caps. 

Meanwhile, England's performances in the New Zealand series indicated their fearless approach led by their new leadership duo of McCullum and captain Ben Stokes.

"The world Test champions were a formidable opponent to overcome, and the alarm bells have probably gone off somewhat around world cricket as to how this team is going to play," said Brendon McCullum after England's seven-wicket win at Headingley.

"When Ben's out there captaining, he's constantly making plays, which I think is great because it means at least we're in control, regardless of what the scoreboard says. Then when he's batting, he's pushing the envelope as well, which is sending a message to not just our dressing room but to other dressing rooms around the world that this is how we're going to play," he continued.

The head coach has also stated that they want to be the number one team and achieve success too. Apart from winning the World Test Championship, they also want to win Ashes and other series as well.

He further added: "Obviously, you want to be the number one team in the world, and you want to achieve the ultimate success, which is being world Test champions, winning the Ashes and beating the top teams consistently. That's the end goal, but what we need to do first of all is enjoy what we've been able to achieve over the last three weeks and understand what we've achieved as well. Cherish it,"

The veteran may have been one of the most attacking players of his generation, but he believes Ben Stokes needs to learn nothing from him in that regard. And, England doesn't have to wait for a long to use their new philosophy again as they will take on India in their next match at Edgbaston starting Friday in a Test which has been rescheduled.

Brendon McCullum also hopes all-rounder Ben Stokes to rise to the challenge. However, India did well in the series against England before it was postponed following the COVID-19 scare. 

"I think the timing of him getting the captaincy is perfect. I know it's early days, but he's exceeded my expectations already, to be honest. His messaging has been very consistent and very articulate as well. He doesn't speak all the time, but when he does speak, it's bang on," he said.

"The skipper has taken them on a journey, I've tried to fill in the gaps where needed, and they've got instant gratification for that change. Enjoy the game with your mates and understand you have a very finite time as an international cricketer, so you should try and enjoy rather than being paralysed by the fear of failure or the noise," the head coach concluded.

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