Brendon McCullum opens up about Ross Taylor's 'uninspiring leadership' in his autobiography
Former New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum has been in the news lately after making some startling revelations in his recently released autobiography "Brendon McCullum- Declared." The autobiography reveals several details about McCullum's illustrious career in the international arena. The latest one to catch the eyes has been McCullum lashing at Ross Taylor's ‘uninspiring captaincy’.
In his book Declared, McCullum has devoted a whole chapter to "The coup that wasn't", describing in detail Taylor's failure to lead the Kiwi side and the circumstances that led to a rift in their relationship. He has also clarified that he had no role to play in the axing of Taylor as captain.
Ross Taylor was appointed as the captain of New Zealand after Daniel Vettori stepped down from the skipper's role following the 2011 World Cup in India. Taylor was made the captain after a "public" process in which both, McCullum and Taylor, were asked to present their cases.
In the book, McCullum speaks of not being satisfied with that process, and of how the public nature of rejecting one of the candidates was not good for the relationship between the players and the team.
The differences between the two former captains started off during New Zealand's tour of West Indies in 2012. McCullum was rested for the shorter format of the game, however, injury to Taylor meant that the wicketkeeper-batsman had to fly in as a replacement. McCullum wasn't allowed to captain the side as the management felt that the then stand-in captain Kane Williamson was doing a great job.
"Either Ross was highly resistant to my captaining the team and leant on Wrighty to change his mind, or it was just an organizational cock-up by Wrighty. The rest of the tour suggested the latter, because much of it was a shambles," McCullum's autobiography stated.
However, McCullum felt that the cracks in his relationship began to get wider after the appointment of Mike Hesson as the head coach in 2012. The legend stated in his autobiography that Taylor never got to talk to the team and express his desire under Hesson.
The only time Taylor was allowed to speak was during defeats and emotional times. "It never made any sense as Taylor would go on to yell at players ," he writes.
In his book he has stated that players asked him to speak to Taylor because they felt they couldn't approach the captain directly, but he did not do so because he didn't want Taylor to feel his players were ganging up on him. After a series of losses at home and away, including a miserable performance at World T20 in Sri Lanka, players were frustrated.
The Galle Test in Sri Lanka in 2012 was a disaster as the team lost by 10 wickets and all of a sudden the team management and the players were against Ross being captain. However, McCullum had a chat with Taylor in order to get him back to the track.
McCullum was quoted by Crincinfo as saying, "I said to him, 'This is your effin' team, mate. You need to grab it by the scruff of the neck and I will help you along the way, otherwise we're going to lose our way completely.'"
McCullum, in his book, describes that he wasn't aware of the fact that Taylor was to be sacked from captaincy at the end of Sri Lanka tour in 2012. It was only after he had reached his home after the tour that he received a call from the board offering him the captaincy.
McCullum goes on to write that the biggest mistake that he made in Taylor's scenario was trusting the board's decision of holding a "public process". The selection panel had Wright, Mark Greatbatch, Buchanan and Justin Vaughan.
He writes, "The fact that I hadn't been astute enough to work out that applying for the captaincy wasn't the right thing to do -- and, worse, I'd willingly engaged in that process -- proved I wasn't ready for it. But neither was Ross. He'd made the same mistake. He was younger than me and, I believe, no more ready for the captaincy than I was.
“And he was just as compromised by New Zealand Cricket's decision to have a public selection process. What happened next made us both a lot wiser -- and certainly older -- but it gouged a rift between us that will probably never heal."
With several shocking revelations being made by the former Kiwi captain, it remains to be seen if Ross Taylor has something to say about his former teammate.