Stuart Broad says England coach Brendon McCullum inspired the dramatic second Test victory against New Zealand by telling his team to “run towards the danger”. McCullum has revitalised England in union with new captain Ben Stokes and the improvement generated by the fresh regime’s positive attitude has been remarkable. England had failed to win any of their previous five Test series, winning just one match from 17 prior to the current New Zealand contest. But after beating the Test world champions by five wickets for a second successive match, England will head to Headingley next week looking to complete a clean sweep.
Just a year ago, England, under the guidance of then coach Chris Silverwood, settled for a draw after refusing to take on a target of 273 in 75 overs against New Zealand.
But, fired by Jonny Bairstow‘s brilliant 136 and stirring words from McCullum, England stormed to victory in Nottingham as they chased down 299 in just 50 overs.
“There’s no doubt that Baz has had an impact already. It does feel really fresh and exciting in the changing room. It’s a very positive language,” Broad said.
“It’s very forward thinking, all about how to move this game forward. This is no dig but at tea, when we were four down with the game in the balance slightly, I’ve certainly been in changing rooms in the past where that would be shut up shop time.
“Baz’s team talk was very much ‘let’s attack the danger; let’s run towards the danger’ so every part of your mind is about going for this win.
“It was never really a case of ‘if we lose one we might shut up shop’. It was always ‘we’re going to win’ and if it doesn’t work, don’t worry about it.”
McCullum vowed to strip out the noise around England and Broad has been impressed by his ability to combine his nous for the game with a simplified mission statement.
“I don’t think he’s spoken particularly deeply, his whole mantra is about enjoyment and fun. The energy is: how good’s Test cricket? How good’s this ground? What can we get out of today?” the veteran fast bowler said.
“He looks like a guy who has a cricket brain that is working all the time, he’s thinking how we can change the game.
“It’s not just praising guys who get a hundred, it’s tiny little things, bits of fielding, momentum changes in the game. He will bring attention to that.”
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