Former New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum criticised his present-day counterpart, Kane Williamson, over his strategy in the ongoing Boxing Day Test against Australia at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG).
After opting to bowl first, the Kiwis came hard at the hosts with a couple of early wickets. However, the New Zealand bowling unit lacked the venom thereafter as Australia put 467 in the first innings. The visitors were not able to get a good start to their batting as well, as Australia reduced them to 44/2 at the stumps on Day 2.
Speaking about New Zealand’s dismal display, McCullum said, “I think it’s been a pretty poor session. I don’t understand some of the tactics to be honest. It’s just staggering. By all means, have a blast, but the game was still in the balance.”
The former wicketkeeper-batsman was speaking about the second session of the second day which saw Williamson handling the ball to Tom Blundell, a batsman who bowled for the first time in international cricket.
“To me, it was a submissive move (to bowl with Blundell). I just don’t understand it. They just rolled over,” McCullum was quoted as saying to the SEN Radio.
On early Friday, Australia lost overnight batsman Steve Smith for 85 but the 30-year-old’s partner Travis Head dug in his feels with Tim Paine to put 150-run partnership.
In the course it, Paine scored 79 and Head scored the second century of his career before losing their wickets to Neil Wagner. Head played a scintillating knock of 114 runs.
Wagner returned figures of 4 for 83, while Tim Southee ended with 3 for 103. Meanwhile, Colin de Grandhomme got 2 for 68 and Trent Boult claimed the remaining wicket.
Earlier on Boxing Day, riding on half-centuries from Smith and Marnus Labuschagne (63), Australia had ended Day 1 with the scoreline of 257 for 4.