BRENDAN MCCULLUM has replaced Ross Taylor as captain of the New Zealand Cricket team, with the national body insisting Taylor wasn’t dumped, but turned down the chance to lead the test side.
NZC boss David White confirmed the change in leadership, with McCullum taking charge of all three forms of the international game – tests, one day internationals and Twenty20 – starting with the looming tour to South Africa.
Coach Mike Hesson had initially recommended that Taylor hold onto the test captaincy and have McCullum take over in the shorter forms of the game, after the rookie coach reviewed the tours to India and Sri Lanka and the T20 World Cup.
This was approved by the board.
However Taylor declined the offer, and has also decided to skip the SA tour, saying he needs a break from the game.
“Mike’s assessment was that he wanted to share the captaincy workload,” White told a press conference.
“He thought the best environment for Ross to develop his captaincy was in the tests.”
White confirmed that Taylor, whose efforts with the bat helped the Black Caps level the two-match test series with Sri Lanka with victory in the second match, wanted to remain.
He met with Taylor yesterday but couldn’t reach a consensus, meaning the team will be without their best batsman against the best team in the world.
“It’s not ideal and we would be a stronger team with Ross in it. But we respect his wishes,” White said.
He said the team still supported Taylor.
“I don’t believe he lost the dressing room. He is well respected,” he said.
He also admitted the saga had been handled poorly and was not happy it had been played out in the media.
It was revealed earlier in the week Hesson had asked Taylor to resign as captain before the Sri Lanka test series.
McCullum has accepted the captaincy offer, and while delighted, felt for Taylor and the difficult circumstances.