Cricket

McCullum: 'Nice guys' image is no act

2015-11-04 10:29
Brendon McCullum (AFP)

Brisbane - Skipper Brendon McCullum insisted on Wednesday that New Zealand's "nice guys" image was authentic after as he responded calmly to Australian claims that their friendly demeanour was just an act.

Australian opener David Warner and captain Steve Smith have both questioned whether the Black Caps were genuine about their polite approach to playing their cricket, which contrasts with the hard-nosed Aussies.

But McCullum, questioned on his team's playing philosophy a day ahead of the first Test in Brisbane, articulated how the Kiwis go about their cricket.

McCullum said he was fine about Australia's in-your-face approach, but added that "sledging never worked" for his Kiwi team.

"That's how we play. It's not for everyone and we don't expect everyone to play the way that we do," he said.

"Everyone is entitled to play in their own way and we've worked out that this gives us our greatest chance as a team."

McCullum explained playing in the right spirit evolved when the New Zealand players looked at what worked best for them in the Test arena.

"It sort of grew organically, to be honest," he said. "For a long period of time we were searching for a bit of a soul about our team.

"In the end we stumbled on the fact that sledging has never worked for us, we're not very good at it for a start, and also we're not skilled enough to be able to take our eyes off the ball and be focused on other things.

"It sits comfortably with this group of guys... and allows us to focus on the job at hand which is executing our skills on the field."

McCullum said there were no fines or punishments handed out within the group to ensure that players maintain the gentlemanly approach.

"No absolutely not, it's got to be authentic or otherwise it's an act," he said.

"We're not trying to put up an act, we just want to go out there and play our cricket and be a part of a team that gives it a good crack and tries to be best we can be representing our country.

"It's certainly not forced upon anyone, it's just grown organically, I guess."

McCullum said his team was excited at the prospect of facing the Australians in their own conditions over three Tests in Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide.

"The guys are relaxed, are in a good frame of mind and are under no illusions about how difficult the task in front of us is," he said.

"If we can focus on the things we need to do and try to execute our team plans the best way we possibly can then we're going to give ourselves the best chance.

"I'm pretty confident that our guys will play well and if we are beaten then we'll make it bloody tough for them to do so."

New Zealand are chasing their first series win in Australia for 30 years and face the challenge that no team has beaten Australia at their Gabba fortress since 1988.

Read more on:    new zealand  |  brendon mccullum  |  cricket
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