England 'won't die wondering' under McCullum - Southee

By Sports Desk May 31, 2022

New Zealand paceman Tim Southee says England "won't die wondering" under his former team-mate Brendon McCullum.

McCullum was this month appointed as England Test head coach on a four-year deal.

It will be the ex-Black Caps captain's first international coaching role and he has been charged with the task of turning around the fortunes of a side in poor form.

England are bottom of the World Test Championship and have not won any of their past five series, a dismal run that resulted in Joe Root stepping down as captain and Ben Stokes replacing him.

New Zealand will attempt to make it a painful start to McCullum's tenure in the first Test at Lord's, which starts on Thursday, but Black Caps quick Southee thinks the 40-year-old can make a big impact.

He said: "It's exciting, obviously a great challenge for Brendon. I know him pretty well. Everything he does, he gives it a 100 per cent, so this will be no different.

"He's excited about the next wee while and what lays ahead of him. I'm sure he'll be doing everything he can to bring the best out of this England Test side. He's a great man-manager and he loves to try to get the best out of people.

"I'm sure he'll be doing that here as well. The way he played his cricket was exciting and fearless, and that's the way he is a person and I'm sure that's the way he is as a coach as well.

"It will be an exciting brand of cricket, I'm sure. They [England] won't die wondering I'd imagine if the way he goes about things is anything to go by."

New Zealand won the World Test Championship in England last year, but drew their past two series against Bangladesh and South Africa.

They have had changes of their own with Ross Taylor and BJ Watling retiring, but Southee is optimistic they can show their class in London.

He said: "It's very important, dropping a couple of Test matches in our home summer puts a little bit extra on this series. But our focus is the first five days here at Lord's, then we shift on to the second Test and the third. As a group, we try to play what's in front of us, attack it one Test at a time.

"We've been lucky that we've had a pretty consistent group of guys for a long period of time. Those two guys, BJ and Ross, have been massive parts of the side for such a long time, they're obviously big holes to fill.

"But we've got guys who have been playing some pretty good cricket and waiting in the wings for a while. Tom Blundell's had glimpses, played the last year and made some pretty handy contributions and the likes of Devon Conway and Will Young have impressed in their short international careers so far."

Related items

  • Republic Bank CPL squads confirmed for 2024 Republic Bank CPL squads confirmed for 2024

    The Republic Bank Caribbean Premier League (CPL) squads for the 2024 season have been confirmed following the completion of the player draft on Monday.

    Kyle Mayers was the first pick of the draft, joining the St Kitts & Nevis Patriots. He will be joined at the Patriots by Mikyle Louis, Ryan John and Veerasammy Permaul. 

    The Saint Lucia Kings welcome USA international Aaron Jones who qualifies to play at the CPL as a local player as he has a Barbados passport. The Kings have also selected Khari Campbell, Johann Jeremiah, Mikkel Govia and Akeem Auguste. 

    The Barbados Royals have picked Kadeem Alleyne, Isai Thorne and Nathan Sealy to complete their squad while the Guyana Amazon Warriors have selected all-rounders Raymon Reifer and Ronaldo Alimohamed. Matthew Nandu also rejoins the Warriors having been selected in the draft. 

    The Antigua & Barbuda Falcons picked five players at the draft with Roshon Primus, Justin Greaves, Jahmar Hamilton, Teddy Bishop and Kofi James joining the newest CPL team. The Trinbago Knight Riders selected Nathan Edward and Shaquere Parris in their emerging player spots.

    The 2024 season gets underway on the 29 August with the Antigua & Barbuda Falcons taking on the St Kitts & Nevis Patriots at the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Stadium. The tournament will also visit St Kitts & Nevis, Saint Lucia, Barbados, Trinidad & Tobago and Guyana. 

    The full squads are as follows:

    Barbados Royals: Rovman Powell, Jason Holder, David Miller, Quinton De Kock, Maheesh Theekshana, Alick Athanaze, Naveen-ul-Haq, Obed McCoy, Kevin Wickham, Keshav Maharaj, Kadeem Alleyne, Rahkeem Cornwall, Isai Thorne, Nathan Sealy, Nyeem Young, Rivaldo Clarke, Ramon Simmonds

    Guyana Amazon Warriors: Imran Tahir, Shimron Hetmyer, Saim Ayub, Shai Hope, Romario Shepherd, Azam Khan, Gudakesh Motie, Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Keemo Paul, Dwaine Pretorius, Kevin Sinclair, Raymon Reifer, Ronaldo Alimohamed, Shamar Joseph, Kevlon Anderson, Matthew Nandu, Junior Sinclair

    Antigua & Barbuda Falcons: Imad Wasim, Brandon King, Fabian Allen, Azmatullah Omarzai, Mohammad Amir, Chris Green, Fakhar Zaman, Roshon Primus, Justin Greaves, Hayden Walsh, Jahmar Hamilton, Teddy Bishop, Kofi James, Shamar Springer, Kelvin Pitman, Jewel Andrew, Joshua James

    St. Kitts & Nevis Patriots: Kyle Mayers, Wanindu Hasaranga, Rilee Rossouw, Sherfane Rutherford, Evin Lewis, Sikandar Raza, Nuwan Thushara, Andre Fletcher, Tristan Stubbs, Dominic Drakes, Odean Smith, Mikyle Louis, Joshua Da Silva, Veerasammy Permaul, Ryan John, Ashmead Nedd, Johann Layne

    Saint Lucia Kings: Heinrich Klaasen, Faf Du Plessis, Alzarri Joseph, Johnson Charles, Roston Chase, Noor Ahmad, David Wiese, Bhanuka Rajapaksa, Matthew Forde, Aaron Jones, Khary Pierre, Khari Campbell, Johann Jeremiah, Shadrack Descarte, Mikkel Govia, McKenny Clarke, Akeem Auguste

    Trinbago Knight Riders: Kieron Pollard, Andre Russell, Sunil Narine, Nicholas Pooran, Tim David, Akeal Hosein, Jason Roy, Dwayne Bravo, Josh Little, Waqar Salamkheil, Jayden Seales, Ali Khan, Mark Deyal, Keacy Carty, Terrence Hinds, Nathan Edward, Shaquere Parris

     

  • 'Nobody gave us a chance' – Cucurella salutes Spain 'family' as Morata thanks Iniesta 'Nobody gave us a chance' – Cucurella salutes Spain 'family' as Morata thanks Iniesta

    Marc Cucurella says Spain "suffered like a family" on their way to Euro 2024 glory, while Alvaro Morata paid tribute to former team-mates Andres Iniesta and Bojan Krkic.

    La Roja captured their record-breaking fourth European Championship crown on Sunday, as Mikel Oyarzabal's 86th-minute strike sealed a 2-1 victory over England in Berlin.

    Although not initially among the pre-tournament favourites, Spain went from strength to strength in Germany, winning all seven of their matches.

    After topping Group B with maximum points, Luis de la Fuente's side swept Georgia aside 4-1 and edged out Germany 2-1 in extra time, before coming from behind to beat France by the same scoreline in the quarter-finals.

    And Cucurella highlighted the togetherness demonstrated by the group, as they delivered their nation's first piece of silverware in 12 years.

    "Nobody gave us a chance," the Chelsea defender said. "We just kept quiet and, in the end, we won the Euros.

    "We showed that we know how to play, but also how to suffer. We suffered like a family. When we arrived, we were a group of players. Now, we are a family.

    "This is incredible, and it's already history."

    Meanwhile, Morata became only the third Spain captain after Ferran Olivella (1964) and Iker Casillas (2008 and 2012) to lift the Henri Delaunay trophy.

    The skipper scored just once in seven games, but worked unselfishly for the good of the team.

    The forward, who has spoken of his mental health challenges in the past, said he may not have even been in Germany but for the help of some former colleagues. 

    "Andres and Bojan are people that I can only thank," he said. "They've been through what I've been through, and there's always the light at the end of the tunnel.

    "If it wasn't for him and Bojan, I wouldn't have played in this European Championship.

    "I've put on my overalls at this [tournament], I had to free up and generate space for my team-mates. For me, that is worth more than having scored 20 goals."

  • Spain 2-1 England: Oyarzabal's late heroics power La Roja to Euro 2024 glory Spain 2-1 England: Oyarzabal's late heroics power La Roja to Euro 2024 glory

    Mikel Oyarzabal proved the late hero as his winner saw Spain down England 2-1 on Sunday.

    Spain became the first team in history to win the European Championship on four separate occasions as Oyarzabal's smart finish four minutes from time sealed a historic victory in Berlin.

    Substitute Cole Palmer had earlier cancelled out Nico Williams' second-half opener, only for Real Sociedad's Oyarzabal to break English hearts in the Three Lions' second consecutive Euros final.

    Gareth Southgate's side almost levelled in the final minute, but Unai Simon and Dani Olmo were the defensive heroes for Spain as England became the first team to lose back-to-back Euros finals.

    A tentative first half was devoid of gilt-edged opportunities as Spain dominated possession without reward against England's well-drilled defence.

    Phil Foden spurned the best chance before the break, but he volleyed tamely straight at Simon.

    The injured Rodri was removed at half-time for Martin Zubimendi in a huge Spanish blow, yet that mattered for little as La Roja cut through England with ease immediately after the interval.

    Yamal ghosted inside from the right flank before sliding across towards the left of the area for an unchallenged Williams to caress a left-footed strike into the bottom-right corner.

    Williams found space once more just minutes later, arrowing a left-footed drive wide from a similar angle to the opener.

    Stones was required to clear off the line from Alvaro Morata, while Williams hammered off target from range and Jordan Pickford superbly denied Yamal.

    Spain's failure to capitalise was punished eight minutes later. A sweeping Three Lions break saw Bukayo Saka roll inside for Jude Bellingham before his offload teed up Palmer, whose guided left-footed finish from outside the box found the bottom-left corner just three minutes after his introduction.

    Pickford was once again equal to Yamal eight minutes from time, parrying away another strong two-handed save after Olmo and Williams combined to set up their teenage team-mate.

    Yet Pickford had no answer when Marc Cucurella whipped low across for Oyarzabal, who prodded into the bottom-left corner for the decisive goal.

    There was time for one more twist, but Simon and Olmo stood firm to thwart Rice and Stones respectively as Spain clung on for glory.

    Wing wizards pave way for La Roja success

    Barcelona winger Yamal, aged just 17 years and one day, surpassed Brazil's Pele – at the 1958 World Cup – as the youngest-ever player to feature in a major tournament final.

    Yet another piece of history was not enough for Yamal, who has been involved in more goals for Spain in all competitions than any other player since his debut in September 2023 (10 – three goals, seven assists).

    His deft assist for Williams added another memorable moment for his embryonic career, and Spain supporters may be relishing the partnership of their two star wingers in future years.

    But it was La Real's Oyarzabal who proved the hero, sneaking in past Pickford to inflict further heartbreak on Southgate's England as two substitutes scored in the final of the Euros or World Cup for the first time.

    Familiar fate for Three Lions

    England suffered heartbreak in the delayed Euro 2020 final after penalty shoot-out failure against Italy, and though they battled all the way, failed to make amends in their first international showpiece away from home soil.

    The Three Lions did themselves no favours immediately after the interval, conceding the fastest goal in the second half of a Euros final, continuing a concerning trend overall.

    England have now conceded the first goal in four consecutive matches for the first time since May/June 1985, and those defensive fragilities were exposed once more when Oyarzabal found a pocket of space for the winner.

    Oyarzabal's magic moment may forever haunt Southgate, who could soon depart as England manager as the first head coach in European Championship history to lose two finals.

    England are also the first side to lose two consecutive Euros finals, and a new era could await after the Three Lions went so close without reward once again.

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.