Former New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum doesn’t think that the England test captain Joe Root has proven himself as a great test match captain yet, despite the fact that he has got more test wins under his belt than any other England captain.
Joe Root has been in charge of the England test side since 2016 and England has lost test series in India, Australia, New Zealand and West Indies under Root. They recently lost a test series against New Zealand at home too, before falling behind by 1-2 in an incomplete and postponed test series against India.
However, it’s not just the results of the games that Brendon McCullum is concerned about when he takes a look at Root’s captaincy. According to McCullum, captaincy is not just about making tactical calls on the pitch, it’s also about building the team.
Right now, there is not a single batsman in England set-up whose career has evolved as a successful test batsman under Root. Root himself has scored heaps of runs for England and has been a lone warrior, but McCullum thinks captaincy is not just about scoring runs yourself, it’s also about getting the best out of your fellow players, whichever way you do it.
Recalling the recently finished Gabba test match, McCullum said there was a stage on the second day of the game where Australia lost a few wickets in a cluster and was under the pump, but Root couldn’t seize the moment as a captain and the game just went away from England.
A leader doesn’t have to be best but has to be inspirational: Brendon McCullum
McCullum is of the opinion that a leader doesn’t necessarily have to the best batsman of the team or the best bowler of the team for that matter. But, a leader has to be someone who can be inspirational to the other players when the going gets tough.
“Leadership is not just about being the best player in the team. Leadership is about inspiring those around you to achieve higher success,” McCullum said, talking about Root’s captaincy on a show named SENZ Breakfast.
When Joe Root captained England in an Ashes series in Australia in 2017, the Poms lost it by 0-4 and barely escaped a clean sweep with a hard-fought draw in Melbourne. And then, when Australia toured England in 2019 for a return Ashes, Root couldn’t guide England to victory again, as the return Ashes ended in a 2-2 draw and Australia retained the Ashes. Now, the current Ashes has not started on a great note for England, either.