Selfless McCullum bows out in style: New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum will retire from all forms of international cricket at the end of the home series against Australia in February 2016. The 34-year-old swashbuckling opener made the announcement in Christchurch a day after clinching Test series victory against Sri Lanka 2-0.
As a result, one of the most entertaining cricketer in T20s, Brendon McCullum will not play the 2016 World T20 in March in India, and Kane Williamson will lead the New Zealand team. He will become the first cricketer to play 100 consecutive Tests from debut for his country when he takes field for the first Test against Australia in Wellington in February 12 – and retire after the second and final Test of that series, in Christchurch from February 20.
The veteran batsman said his decision to announce his retirement now was borne of circumstance and because the New Zealand squad for the upcoming ICC event is to be named soon, he wanted to put himself out of contention for selection. Kane Williamson, the emerging talent will be his successor. Retiring after 101 Tests, he will end just 12 short of the most Tests played by a Kiwi. Daniel Vettori tops that list with 113 matches.
The dashing right-handed batsman also needs just one more six in Test cricket to pass Adam Gilchrist”s all time record.
Brendon McCullum: “Ideally, I would have preferred to wait until after the (second) Test in Christchurch to make this news public. However, the schedule for naming the ICC World T20 squads means I could not have managed this without causing a lot of confusion and speculation – something I was keen to avoid.”
“I’ve loved my opportunity to play for, and captain the Black Caps, but all good things have to come to an end, and I’m just grateful for the wonderful experience of playing for my country.”
“There”s a time and place for reflection and that”s at the end of your career. For now, I”ll be giving all my attention to helping the team focus on what”s coming up over the next few weeks – and making sure we”re in the best possible shape for what”s going to be a very challenging summer.”
McCullum has scored 5,909 runs at an average of 30.30 in 254 ODIs, and 2,140 runs at 35.66 in 71 T20Is.
He has appeared in 99 Tests and scored 6,273 runs – New Zealand’s second-highest Test run scorer after former captain Stephen Fleming (7,172). Has nine centuries to his name with an average of 38.48 and highest score of 302, one of the best Test knocks ever and an unforgettable one against India.