“Buckle up and get ready for the ride.” That was the line from Rob Key, the managing director of England cricket after he appointed Brendon McCullum to be the new Head Coach of the England Test Cricket team.
Only time will tell if this is one of the craziest decisions in recent cricket history or a stroke of genius.
BREAKING: Brendon McCullum has been appointed England Men's Test Head Coach 🏴🏏 pic.twitter.com/6VN3KboI3h
— Sky Sports Cricket (@SkyCricket) May 12, 2022
Rob Key, the man who appointed McCullum, has only been in his role for a few weeks himself. He came straight from the commentary box to be English cricket’s new supremo.
His first job was to find a new England Test captain, which he did when he appointed swashbuckling all-rounder Ben Stokes as the 81st leader of the men’s Test team.
Next on the inexperienced Key’s list of jobs was to find a new head coach for the Test team.
There were experienced and well-respected names interested. Guys like Gary Kirsten who has a wealth of international experience, Graham Ford, Simon Katich, and also Paul Collingwood – although Collingwood may have blown his chance whilst leading England on their recent ill-fated tour of West Indies (England lost a dull series 1-0).
All these guys were overlooked, and former New Zealand batsman and current IPL franchise coach Brendon McCullum has been chosen. A man with zero international coaching experience!
McCullum’s appointment has raised a few eyebrows, shall we say. Especially with far more obvious candidates available.
So just why did England pick McCullum to replace the sacked Chris Silverwood?
Captain and Coach Combination
Rob Key will have thought long and hard about which personality had the best chance of gelling with new captain Ben Stokes.
McCullum is cut from the same cloth as the England captain. He is attack-minded and doesn’t believe in playing safe, or taking backward steps. Both men would rather go down fighting. And as the adage goes, neither man is one to die wondering!
Vaughan and Fletcher; The Perfect Foils
One of the most successful recent partnerships between a captain and coach for England was Michael Vaughan and Duncan Fletcher. But they were almost opposites.
Fletcher was a more cautious character, while Vaughan, wasn’t overly attack-minded, but played a more positive brand of cricket than perhaps Fletcher would have proposed.
In short Vaughan and Fletcher were good foils for each other. Some of Vaughan’s successes could have been down in part to Fletcher reining him in a bit.
Strauss and Flower; World Number One, But Not The Most Entertaining
In more recent times Andrew Strauss and Andy Flower struck up a pretty potent partnership. One that saw England rise to be ranked as the number one Test team in the world.
Both were cautious tactically, and had a habit of more relying on mistakes from the other team, than playing attacking cricket on the front foot. They did also have the skill sets of Graeme Swann and Kevin Pietersen to fall back on as well.
But who is going to rein Stokes or McCullum in? They’re just too similar! So already the question has to be asked, are they the correct foil for each other?
Whether the partnership works or not is another thing, but one thing I am expecting is some very attack-minded team selections for the upcoming Test series against New Zealand.
So along with information about the upcoming series, here are some good value cricket betting picks on the series, given some of the England team selections I’m expecting to happen.
|England v New Zealand 2022; Series Test Betting|
Don’t forget! Keep it here for more free sports betting picks throughout the series.
What Next For England?
Up next for England is a three-match Test series against New Zealand, the reigning world test champions, and McCullum’s country of birth.
- What; England vs New Zealand Test Series (best of three)
- When; June 2nd – June 27th, 2022
- Where; London, Nottingham, and Leeds
England will go into the series as the cricket betting favorites with the the best rated online sportsbooks. But only because of home advantage. It’s certainly not based on form!
Already Ben Stokes has suggested England will go back to some of their tried and tested performers.
Names like Jimmy Anderson and his bowling partner, Stuart Broad. So get on them quickly to be top bowlers at the best cricket betting sites.
With England in a precarious position, and with a lot of their main fast bowling options injured, there is no doubt both these guys will play.
They will almost certainly play in all three Test matches, making them both great picks to be series top bowlers.
Boom Or Boost For England’s Batters
The other thing Stokes and McCullum will do is attack, and if that fails, they will attack harder, so when the series starts, don’t expect boring cricket and drab draws. These three Test matches look set to be crash, bang, wallop.
England’s batting has been woeful lately. The batters haven’t seemed to know whether to stick or twist.
Well, they will be in no doubt what the job is when the New Zealand series starts. It will be twist, twist, and twist again. So what if you go bust? Just go for it.
This means there could well recall for some of England’s more attack-minded batsmen who were jettisoned after the Ashes debacle. And these guys will be given the license to go down swinging.
So with that in mind, don’t be surprised to soon see a recall for Jos Buttler, and also, don’t be surprised if an attacking batsman like Jonny Bairstow ends up as the top English run-scorer in the series.