Former New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum has questioned Joe Root’s leadership qualities after England went down in the first Ashes Test at the Gabba. McCullum labelled Root as a wonderful guy and an outstanding cricketer but maintained he has not seen any significant leadership skills in the talismanic batsman.
The visitors failed to match up to Australia’s dominance in the first Ashes Test where they lost by nine wickets. McCullum stated that England just ‘went missing’ when the Aussies started to flex their muscles. The former Kiwi cricketer also added that it is remarkable that the Joe Root led outfit has lost 7 Test matches in this calendar year alone.
Speaking to SENZ Breakfast, Brendon McCullum said:
“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. 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.”
Brendon McCullum further added that Joe Root is not the best skipper in the world, saying that the English captain allowed the match to drift in favour of Australia.
“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,” concluded McCullum.