New Zealand in Bangladesh 2013-14 November 2, 2013

McCullum heads home with back trouble

ESPNcricinfo staff
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Brendon McCullum, the New Zealand captain, is returning home immediately after being ruled out of the final two matches of the Bangladesh tour with "significant" pain from a long-standing back problem.

McCullum had already been withdrawn from the forthcoming short tour to Sri Lanka, alongside Ross Taylor, so that he could play some domestic first-class cricket in preparation for the Test series against West Indies which starts on December 3.

Now fitness, as well as form, is a concern for McCullum who endured a lean time with the bat in Bangladesh. He made scores of 21, 22 and 11 in the Test series followed by 0 and 14 in the first two one-day internationals which New Zealand lost to concede the series to Bangladesh.

Following an MRI scan in Dhaka, Paul Close, the New Zealand physio, said: "Brendon's back needs careful management - it's flared up and is giving him significant pain. The best course of action is getting him home for rehabilitation as soon as possible."

Although McCullum's form has slipped in recent weeks, New Zealand can ill-afford to lose his services for the beginning of West Indies' visit as Kane Williamson, the vice-captain, is a serious doubt for the opening Test in Dunedin, and possibly the second in Wellington, having suffered a fractured thumb in Bangladesh.

Problems with his back was one of the major reasons behind McCullum giving up the wicketkeeping gloves in Tests, a move he also tried to make in ODIs but Luke Ronchi's struggles in England, during the series earlier earlier this year and the Champions Trophy, meant McCullum took back the role for this one-day series.

Ronchi has now arrived in Bangladesh having been recalled following Williamson's injury but the gloves may go to Tom Latham as New Zealand aim to avoid a whitewash. BJ Watling is settled as New Zealand's Test wicketkeeper.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • POSTED BY kiwicricketnut on | November 4, 2013, 4:26 GMT

    Alot if hate out there for mccullum, since he has taken the captaincy both his game and the teams has gone backwards, he must see that and is probably trying harder than anyone to fix it, but i like mccullum as odi captain and t20 captain but he's been found wanting in tests a long time now but he can't drop himself, im going to wish him a speedy recovery, he's given alot to nz cricket over the years and is still one of the most destructive short form cricketers in the world so he definately has a place in the black caps, it just shouldn't be tests, but that is entirely up to his mate hesson to grow a set and do whats best for the team, not whats best for mccullum. I don't blame mccullum for the whole team going backwards, coach is meant to be making these players better cricketers

  • POSTED BY fr600 on | November 3, 2013, 14:12 GMT

    McCullum is surely an amazing player, no doubt. But one player cannot help win every match.

  • POSTED BY fr600 on | November 3, 2013, 14:11 GMT

    @Taleb87 We have seen what McCullum could do againt BD win the first two games.

  • POSTED BY Big_Maxy_Walker on | November 3, 2013, 5:03 GMT

    ronchi had a bad run in the ODIs but that is the kiwis fault for having him opening. Part of this obsession in world cricket of having the keeper open in limited overs cricket. He should be at 6 or 7 where he has played most of his career. McCullum if he is such a world class player as people say he should not hide down the order. Ronchi was very good in the recent A games and scored a couple of centuries there

  • POSTED BY Taleb87 on | November 3, 2013, 1:04 GMT

    Bangladesh should definitely have a nice relief after departing of B. McCullam to home . in the modern cricket world , B. McCullum is very much well known as a most destructive Batter in both odi and t20 format . He might have suffering from some irregularity with the bat but NZ will obviously miss his batting strength with BD and upcoming SL tour . Some NZ fans are criticizing about his batting position & performance with bat . yes my instinct also says he should come forward with upgrading his batting position to lead his team from the front . I do believe he is well capable of playing opener's rules as he accustomed to do it before and with Kolkata Night riders. He also does have some sublime manner in cricket what he showed in 1st test match with shakib ul hasan to get his half century . I fancy of BD cricket but I do love watching his batting . so I am looking forward to his come back in NZ cricket .

  • POSTED BY StevieS on | November 2, 2013, 21:19 GMT

    Headline should of read "McCullum heads home with bat trouble" months ago. No big loss.

  • POSTED BY corzaNZ on | November 2, 2013, 20:59 GMT

    This could be a blessing for us. B McCullum has been woeful with the bat in ODI cricket over the past 3 years. Taking away the games against Canada and Zimbabwe, who he scored centuries against ( his only 2 over that period) his batting average against the rest of the teams is 25.95. Hardly commands a place in the team. Having said that though when hes fit he will be straight back in the there, lets just hope he can finally contribute to the team cause those numbers are terrible.

  • POSTED BY BARFI on | November 2, 2013, 20:28 GMT

    Don't be hard on him. He is a world class player

  • POSTED BY Ain_EL_Sabet on | November 2, 2013, 20:23 GMT

    Its better for new zealand becuz he is obviously out of form , let someone else play in place of him for srilanka tour and w.indies tour .

  • POSTED BY MAN_AT_WORK on | November 2, 2013, 20:17 GMT

    Hope Mccullum get better soon!

  • POSTED BY kiwicricketnut on | November 4, 2013, 4:26 GMT

    Alot if hate out there for mccullum, since he has taken the captaincy both his game and the teams has gone backwards, he must see that and is probably trying harder than anyone to fix it, but i like mccullum as odi captain and t20 captain but he's been found wanting in tests a long time now but he can't drop himself, im going to wish him a speedy recovery, he's given alot to nz cricket over the years and is still one of the most destructive short form cricketers in the world so he definately has a place in the black caps, it just shouldn't be tests, but that is entirely up to his mate hesson to grow a set and do whats best for the team, not whats best for mccullum. I don't blame mccullum for the whole team going backwards, coach is meant to be making these players better cricketers

  • POSTED BY fr600 on | November 3, 2013, 14:12 GMT

    McCullum is surely an amazing player, no doubt. But one player cannot help win every match.

  • POSTED BY fr600 on | November 3, 2013, 14:11 GMT

    @Taleb87 We have seen what McCullum could do againt BD win the first two games.

  • POSTED BY Big_Maxy_Walker on | November 3, 2013, 5:03 GMT

    ronchi had a bad run in the ODIs but that is the kiwis fault for having him opening. Part of this obsession in world cricket of having the keeper open in limited overs cricket. He should be at 6 or 7 where he has played most of his career. McCullum if he is such a world class player as people say he should not hide down the order. Ronchi was very good in the recent A games and scored a couple of centuries there

  • POSTED BY Taleb87 on | November 3, 2013, 1:04 GMT

    Bangladesh should definitely have a nice relief after departing of B. McCullam to home . in the modern cricket world , B. McCullum is very much well known as a most destructive Batter in both odi and t20 format . He might have suffering from some irregularity with the bat but NZ will obviously miss his batting strength with BD and upcoming SL tour . Some NZ fans are criticizing about his batting position & performance with bat . yes my instinct also says he should come forward with upgrading his batting position to lead his team from the front . I do believe he is well capable of playing opener's rules as he accustomed to do it before and with Kolkata Night riders. He also does have some sublime manner in cricket what he showed in 1st test match with shakib ul hasan to get his half century . I fancy of BD cricket but I do love watching his batting . so I am looking forward to his come back in NZ cricket .

  • POSTED BY StevieS on | November 2, 2013, 21:19 GMT

    Headline should of read "McCullum heads home with bat trouble" months ago. No big loss.

  • POSTED BY corzaNZ on | November 2, 2013, 20:59 GMT

    This could be a blessing for us. B McCullum has been woeful with the bat in ODI cricket over the past 3 years. Taking away the games against Canada and Zimbabwe, who he scored centuries against ( his only 2 over that period) his batting average against the rest of the teams is 25.95. Hardly commands a place in the team. Having said that though when hes fit he will be straight back in the there, lets just hope he can finally contribute to the team cause those numbers are terrible.

  • POSTED BY BARFI on | November 2, 2013, 20:28 GMT

    Don't be hard on him. He is a world class player

  • POSTED BY Ain_EL_Sabet on | November 2, 2013, 20:23 GMT

    Its better for new zealand becuz he is obviously out of form , let someone else play in place of him for srilanka tour and w.indies tour .

  • POSTED BY MAN_AT_WORK on | November 2, 2013, 20:17 GMT

    Hope Mccullum get better soon!

  • POSTED BY goabnb94 on | November 2, 2013, 19:48 GMT

    Lean time with the bat? He hasn't scored a test century since 2010, and this was a flat pitch. Since then, the only time he can make starts is either against poor attacks, or flat pitches. So, against England at home he did well, but in England he was terrible. As well as Bagnladesh, South Africa, Sri Lanka, India... And the exact same can be said about his ODI performance. I don't mind saying McCullum is New Zealand's worst specialist batsman in the squad. I don't want to see him injured, as he is a good keeper and T20 player, and at the very least can share his experience at the domestic level, but I do celebrate that he isn't in the New Zealand squad.

  • POSTED BY SyedAreYouDumb on | November 2, 2013, 19:38 GMT

    Looks like no T20 fire works by Mccullum then, I still remember his 123 against us at Pallekelle! Thats a relief he is not playing! I expect NZ to not win a single game on the whole tour!

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  • POSTED BY SyedAreYouDumb on | November 2, 2013, 19:38 GMT

    Looks like no T20 fire works by Mccullum then, I still remember his 123 against us at Pallekelle! Thats a relief he is not playing! I expect NZ to not win a single game on the whole tour!

  • POSTED BY goabnb94 on | November 2, 2013, 19:48 GMT

    Lean time with the bat? He hasn't scored a test century since 2010, and this was a flat pitch. Since then, the only time he can make starts is either against poor attacks, or flat pitches. So, against England at home he did well, but in England he was terrible. As well as Bagnladesh, South Africa, Sri Lanka, India... And the exact same can be said about his ODI performance. I don't mind saying McCullum is New Zealand's worst specialist batsman in the squad. I don't want to see him injured, as he is a good keeper and T20 player, and at the very least can share his experience at the domestic level, but I do celebrate that he isn't in the New Zealand squad.

  • POSTED BY MAN_AT_WORK on | November 2, 2013, 20:17 GMT

    Hope Mccullum get better soon!

  • POSTED BY Ain_EL_Sabet on | November 2, 2013, 20:23 GMT

    Its better for new zealand becuz he is obviously out of form , let someone else play in place of him for srilanka tour and w.indies tour .

  • POSTED BY BARFI on | November 2, 2013, 20:28 GMT

    Don't be hard on him. He is a world class player

  • POSTED BY corzaNZ on | November 2, 2013, 20:59 GMT

    This could be a blessing for us. B McCullum has been woeful with the bat in ODI cricket over the past 3 years. Taking away the games against Canada and Zimbabwe, who he scored centuries against ( his only 2 over that period) his batting average against the rest of the teams is 25.95. Hardly commands a place in the team. Having said that though when hes fit he will be straight back in the there, lets just hope he can finally contribute to the team cause those numbers are terrible.

  • POSTED BY StevieS on | November 2, 2013, 21:19 GMT

    Headline should of read "McCullum heads home with bat trouble" months ago. No big loss.

  • POSTED BY Taleb87 on | November 3, 2013, 1:04 GMT

    Bangladesh should definitely have a nice relief after departing of B. McCullam to home . in the modern cricket world , B. McCullum is very much well known as a most destructive Batter in both odi and t20 format . He might have suffering from some irregularity with the bat but NZ will obviously miss his batting strength with BD and upcoming SL tour . Some NZ fans are criticizing about his batting position & performance with bat . yes my instinct also says he should come forward with upgrading his batting position to lead his team from the front . I do believe he is well capable of playing opener's rules as he accustomed to do it before and with Kolkata Night riders. He also does have some sublime manner in cricket what he showed in 1st test match with shakib ul hasan to get his half century . I fancy of BD cricket but I do love watching his batting . so I am looking forward to his come back in NZ cricket .

  • POSTED BY Big_Maxy_Walker on | November 3, 2013, 5:03 GMT

    ronchi had a bad run in the ODIs but that is the kiwis fault for having him opening. Part of this obsession in world cricket of having the keeper open in limited overs cricket. He should be at 6 or 7 where he has played most of his career. McCullum if he is such a world class player as people say he should not hide down the order. Ronchi was very good in the recent A games and scored a couple of centuries there

  • POSTED BY fr600 on | November 3, 2013, 14:11 GMT

    @Taleb87 We have seen what McCullum could do againt BD win the first two games.