Martin Crowe
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Former New Zealand batsman and captain

New Zealand cricket isn't worth the risk

Despite its mishandling of Ross Taylor, NZC remains unaccountable

Martin Crowe

December 7, 2012

Comments: 114 | Text size: A | A

Ross Taylor celebrates his eighth Test century, Sri Lanka v New Zealand, 2nd Test, Colombo, 1st day, November 25, 2012
Over the last week the New Zealand board has destroyed the soul of Ross Taylor © Associated Press
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Cricket has stood the test of time as a great sport. Its worth is obvious when the sun comes out and a contest between two teams can be enjoyed hour after hour, day after day.

Many play because of the unique nature of individual expression, bowler against batsman, inside a team environment. Eleven-a-side offers plenty of variety in personality and character, which is required, given the different roles and skills that are called upon. Cricket is a fine all-round sport: healthy for the body but without direct contact, and healthy for the mind as it makes you think and concentrate for long periods.

It's no different in New Zealand, despite our national game being rugby. Of course our climate is more suited to the winter code, but you still can't beat a summer afternoon Down Under playing cricket, either professionally or as a pastime. For a century we have embraced our favourite summer sport. It has added worth to our landscape, our culture, and to our international reputation as a nation.

Not anymore. When an organisation like New Zealand Cricket starts stripping the self-worth (and I don't mean monetary worth) from talented athletes, when a young player enters the system and leaves it disillusioned and dispirited, the the sport becomes worthless.

In a previous article I wrote about why I thought we struggled to score more Test hundreds compared to any other nation. I named a large group of batsmen through the last ten years who have come and gone through our appalling system, and no doubt most have departed feeling a certain disenchantment with their treatment.

It's sad to see young people chase their dreams only to miss out. Of course that is part of life and its challenges. But in New Zealand the cricket environment is failing more players than ever. In short, that is why we are now ninth below Bangladesh in ODIs, and eighth in Tests and T20.

Cricket is tough on the individual; you can spend half your life playing only to retire in your mid-30s with no other skills to offer in the workforce because cricket has consumed all your time and energy.

Over the last week NZC destroyed the soul of Ross Taylor, easily our best player. They have apparently apologised for the way his sacking from the captaincy was handled. Nevertheless they have amputated his spirit and there is no prosthetic for that. And yet NZC goes unaccountable. They continue to strip the worth from players and, therefore, as an organisation, they have definitely become worthless.

The leadership has been poor in the past, but the fish head couldn't smell any worse now. From the chairman to the CEO to the coach to the manager, they have all played their collective part in what is arguably the most botched administration in New Zealand sporting history.

 
 
This week the game in New Zealand has been severely damaged. Those who have contributed to this debacle may as well stay on because they have done such a murderous job that the next lot, no matter how good they are, will always be playing catch up
 

Some are saying that the removal of Taylor as captain was an orchestrated coup, stemming back to when John Wright resigned in April. No one will know, and who really cares whether it is by design or by incompetence? The fact is, the execution is rotten enough for accountability to be demanded and for all four positions be given to more transparent, more competent and more worthy men.

Taylor is such a resilient character that he will bounce back. But he will probably never trust NZC again. Coaches will come and go and it won't affect his batting, which has been amazing while he has been captain.

When he was told by the management just days before the first Test in Sri Lanka that he was useless, he didn't say anything, he didn't react; instead he went out and won the second Test off his own bat. Knowing the circumstances, I have no hesitation in saying that his 142 and 74 on a turning pitch, plus his winning captaincy, were the equal of Richard Hadlee's 15 wickets in Brisbane in 1985. These two performances stand out to me as the greatest in our Test history.

During New Zealand's next Test against South Arica in the New Year, Taylor will be on a beach somewhere, playing with his young family. It is extraordinary to think this could happen but NZC had no hesitation to make it so. Not one kid that I know in New Zealand understands it. They are confused.

And they are the future. They will be subconsciously wondering if playing cricket beyond school is worthwhile.

Everyone knows that the more New Zealand play badly, the less their players will be recruited to the likes of the IPL. The present players are thriving in it, but over time the money and opportunity will dry up for nations who drift into the backwaters. The next generation may not see the lure in playing unless the present players create an attraction that is good enough. This present bunch have acquired a reputation for looking after their own and forgetting the future.

This week the game in New Zealand has been severely damaged. Permanently, I believe. Those who have contributed to this debacle may as well stay on because they have done such a murderous job that the next lot, no matter how good they are, will always be playing catch up. But those directly accountable should go, simply as rightful punishment.

No matter what happens, who comes or goes, NZC has shown that it is not safe for a young person to risk the journey knowing that the likelihood of his or her worth being stolen away is odds on. If there is one thing in life that is always valuable and important, it's your feeling of self-worth. With cricket in New Zealand I wouldn't risk it; it's just not worth it.

Martin Crowe, one of the leading batsmen of the late '80s, played 77 Tests for New Zealand

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Posted by BG4cricket on (December 10, 2012, 21:05 GMT)

Martin what a terrific and passionate piece of writing. The whole matter has been handled very poorly indeed and I shudder to think how badly the team will be mauled in the Tests against South Africa without their only real international standard batsman. In reality it would not matter who the captain was as the players are simply not up to the standard of most teams with the exception of perhaps Taylor, Southee, Boult and Baz. This is the fault of selectors for continually picking the wrong sides (eg always only picking 5 specialist batsmen, not picking Watling, continuing to pick Franklin etc) and with administrators for not getting the development paths right and in having a coach with no first class playing experience and with a moderate coaching record in any event.

Posted by Kentheavenonearth on (December 10, 2012, 11:21 GMT)

I CANNOT BELIEVE IT Taylor is easily NZ's greatest since Hadlee and Crowe. Just praying he tours England, Grace Road's biggest match in a decade come May. If English cricket can assist admistrators worldwide take note: the renaissance we've enjoyed since DARK AGES OF 90S from Fletch/Hussain is about taking the long term view and making playing for your country fuzzywarm and focussed.

Posted by zenboomerang on (December 10, 2012, 2:52 GMT)

Seems coaching works differently in NZ - they sack captains rather than selectors... Yet the coach is primely there to build up the team & work & support the captain... Yet Henson & his cronies failed to do this with Taylor... Wright was a very vocal coach that regularly addressed the team in the dressing room while Henson likes to sit in the background - why have a coach at all if he doesn't talk to the squad?... Yet with Wright gone, now Taylor had to change his role with no support from the coaching team - tough gig in a short period of time... Seems a couple of bowlers were also grumpy with Taylor's frustration when they bowled bad deliveries - in Oz if bowlers don't perform properly you get dropped, they're lucky they play for NZ...

Posted by reywob on (December 9, 2012, 19:02 GMT)

Martin Crowe says it how it is, we need more ex test players in the top NZ cricket roles.Taylor is our best current player.On a different note it would not surprise me if Ryder did not play for NZ again and that will be of his own choice.NZ cricket without Taylor and Ryder is going to take some hidings on the field.

Posted by   on (December 9, 2012, 18:34 GMT)

True but hard to conceive. But the time when BCCI flexed it's power over this board they lost invaluable services of SHANE BOND. I still couldn't get out of that to digest this latest episode. From then I used to think it'll always be better to play in our backyards to enjoy the essence of the game.

Posted by   on (December 9, 2012, 16:45 GMT)

I don't agree that a prerequisite for being coach of the NZ cricket team is having played Test or even first class cricket. Graham Henry coached the All Blacks to the world cup, and he never played for the All Blacks.

That being said, the question should have been framed liked this: would we rather have NZ's best batsman in the side or be graced with a coach who has coached Kenya and Otago (not sure which team is worse)?

Finally, if senior bowlers were unhappy with Taylor's responses when they bowled a poor ball: putting aside the fact that they shouldn't be bowling pies in the first place, it seems to have done the trick, as I don't seem to remember taking 20 wickets too many times immediately before Taylor's captaincy.

Posted by   on (December 9, 2012, 11:55 GMT)

The more I think about it, the more I read, there is only one solution. Send Hesson back to Otago, or Kenya and appoint a new coach. This must be done for two reasons. Firstly, NZC must be seen to act decisively over Hesson's handling of this sorry saga. Surely they cannot want that level of incompetence in their ranks and lets face it, he's gives them every justification to terminate his contract. Secondly, while Hesson remains at the helm the door remains only partially ajar for Ross Taylor's return. We need the best players playing for NZ.

In regard to choice of coach. Give John Wright a one year contract and appoint Stephen Flemming as assistant coach with a view to him taking over. Seems Ross Taylor benefited from JW's coaching style and Stephen Flemming would also benefit from have such a mentor. I think Stephen Flemming is the future. His cricketing credentials, and ability to inspire and lead certainly outstrip the current coach.

Posted by mthw on (December 9, 2012, 11:44 GMT)

I have been a huge NZ cricket fan since the moment that I became aware of this great sport growing up in Wellington. Being a NZ cricket fan in the 80's was awesome, in the 90's it was challenging, and in the 00's with Fleming at the helm it was pleasure. However, I have lived in Australia for the past 10 years, and I am finding less and less reason to search Internet sites to read and watch NZ games as I have become so disillusioned with the selection policies of the team in the past couple years, and the treatment of certain players has been embarrassing to say the least.

I fear that this latest incident with Taylor could be the final nail in the coffin for me and NZ cricket. I real don't think I can follow a team with McCullum as leader, who I believe should be justifying his selection in the team, not the first name on the list.

If I feel this disillusioned with NZ cricket, I can only imagine how Ross Taylor feels...

This is a disgrace...

Posted by DJRNZ on (December 9, 2012, 11:26 GMT)

My best cricketing memories are of MD. Crowe and A.Jones batting during the late 80's early 90's - got me into cricket as a kid. Hopeful that Taylor and Ryder can one day emulate that because they could be better. McCullum said in an interview that they stopped listening to Crowe a while back. Well by all accounts Crowe has worked closely with Taylor and look at his record compared to McCullums. We need people like Crowe who are passionate about NZ cricket and intellectual powerhouses in terms of the game to sit on the board, not businessmen. Bracewell, Vaughan and now the current board / coach have destroyed NZ Cricket and will anything be done? That's what worries me the most, that this will just continue and guys like Taylor and Ryder will never reach their full potential as was the case with quite a few very good NZ cricketers. Don't give up Martin, guys like me can't be heard but surely someone of your stature in the game can be and somehow make a difference.

Posted by here2rock on (December 9, 2012, 6:46 GMT)

Great article Martin, it is really shame for world cricket that a player of his ability has to sit out the South Africa series for wrong reasons. Let's hope that he is recalled to the team and we have a good series.

Posted by England_forevah on (December 9, 2012, 5:35 GMT)

As an Englishman living in NZ, I am a great admirer of NZ cricket and wish the team all the best. I met Ross Taylor once - a few years back when he was just coming into the Test team - and thought he was the most delightful gentleman. I am appalled by such treatment of a fine NZ player and sportsman. I fear the team will become an unlovely outfit under its new leadership.

Posted by Bring_back_Wright on (December 9, 2012, 5:28 GMT)

Well said Martin. Thanks for taking a stand by refusing to have anything to do with these muppets. I just can't support this team under the current circumstances, and won't be attending any games while Hessan is coach. Unfortunately, I don't expect any accountability for this mess, NZC just don't get it.

Posted by Merc_Octavius on (December 9, 2012, 4:19 GMT)

I grew up in the 80's/90's time period which really did appear to be the heyday of NZ cricket. I watched the likes of Hadlee and Wright and Jones, then later Rutherford and Greatbatch, and then Harris, Astle, McMillan. And, lets not forget another of our great captains, who was also let down by the upper management of NZC, Stephen Fleming! I guess I was spoiled really. These guys made me want to play, they inspired me, but what do the kids have today. I really have never agreed much with Martin Crowe in the past, but I simply cannot deny the validity of what he has said. In his oh so eloquent way, he really has stripped the whole topic bare and truly illustrated how we all (in NZ) feel. My heart goes out to Ross and I truly hope he comes back soon, because really McCullum? This seems like a sad joke to me, the guy was a fair keeper, but really, as far as test matches go, that's where it ends. And to be honest, he shouldn't be allowed anywhere near the white uniform in the first place!

Posted by k.mithilesh on (December 9, 2012, 3:25 GMT)

"Nevertheless they have amputated his spirit and there is no prosthetic for that. "....Somebody has been watching Scent of a Woman!!!!

Posted by timmyw on (December 9, 2012, 3:16 GMT)

I've been wondering about this all week. Why the hell did they drop Taylor? Or gut him would be more accurate. I couldn't work it out for the life of me. I think he's pretty good, both captaincy and batting. Sometimes he could be a little conservative but I think you had to be with that team of his. Now NZ have just flushed their best batsman down the s bend. lol. I remember being confused with the way the treated Bond. That guy was dynamite. NZC treated him like garbage as well. I hope Taylor's there next time NZ visit Australia. Harsh words from you Martin but they ring true to me so hopefully they are heeded now before it's too late, would be a tragedy if NZ disappeared from the international landscape. I am confused about the way my own country (Australia) have been treating some of their players lately too.

Posted by HawK89 on (December 9, 2012, 2:58 GMT)

Pretty 1 sided article. Ross Taylor shouldn't of been captain in the first place, and hes proven that with his poor field placements. Honestly, becoming lower than Bangladesh in NZ's favourite format must call for changes. John Bracewell and Justin Vaughan have run NZ cricket to the ground during their time, now we have a professional outsider cleaning their mess up, this will come with trial and error. No need to back track with an article like this.

Posted by vik56in on (December 9, 2012, 2:52 GMT)

Crowe,I like reading all your articles. I miss Peter Roebuck,but not anymore

Posted by   on (December 9, 2012, 2:43 GMT)

I am a SriLnakan domiciled in Sydney for 25 years and have folowed world cricket for 50 years. From an outsiders pont of view , it is obvious an injustice has ben done to Taylor by incompetent oficials as much as Sri lanka cricket has ben ruined by politicaly backed oficicials and son they are to be replaced. Ranjan Rodrigo Sydney

Posted by   on (December 9, 2012, 2:33 GMT)

well said Martin Crowe, He is the one who knows the insides of NZ Cricket and has knowledge of the inner workings of the board. It is indeed a coup to shaft Taylor back stabbing is a better word. I totally agree with Martin the whole board should be sacked. I think Key needs to step in as PM and revamp NZ cricket. Shame on McCullum even accepting the post! peter

Posted by   on (December 9, 2012, 2:20 GMT)

Agree with you totally Martin! There are good people out there but not in the current NZC management environment. I liked your article a couple of weeks ago and the result in Sri Lanka (2nd Test) which followed. If the legends of the past (Crowe's, Hadlee's , Coney etc) are giving constructive comment it can only benefit the team now or we will stay bottom for many more years to come.

Posted by northumbriannomad on (December 9, 2012, 0:38 GMT)

I hadn't heard about this Ross Taylor debacle until today, and I have to say I'm completely flabbergasted. NZ cricket isn't exactly overflowing with 24-carat international stars, but he is top of the list. What NZC think they're playing at, heaven alone knows. Well said, Martin Crowe. A nation of 4.5 million must punch well above its weight to thrive in world cricket, and NZ has done that and must continue to do it.

Posted by   on (December 9, 2012, 0:22 GMT)

As an Aussie supporter I find no satisfaction in this present inept NZC administration. Cricket needs its present international base preserved for the overall future of the game so that it remains a truly international sport. With the inept administrations of NZ and Zimbabwe, this is to a degree under threat.

Posted by   on (December 9, 2012, 0:13 GMT)

Hit the nail right on the head again Mr Crowe. This has been a very depressing week for those of us that love New Zealand cricket, whether they be lifetime fans, or new recruits to this wonderful game. The tailspin that has been going on is getting worse by the week and the dictatorial fashion with which NZC is destroying the game in NZ goes beyond upsetting - it is absolutely maddening.

I won't be supporting the team in South Africa, but not because of spite - it's just I don't care enough anymore after the disrespect shown to the fans and most importantly one of the greatest and most loyal players we have ever produced. If the boards mission was to foster antipathy and apathy for a team that has in the past has had its rough patches, but has also been an inspiration against much larger and feircer opposition, then mission well and truly accomplished.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 23:59 GMT)

I just wish all had said nothing and just let the bat do the talking !

Posted by Sombrehombre on (December 8, 2012, 23:35 GMT)

As a life long NZ cricket supporter the thing that consistently disappoints me is the failure to ever have our top team on the park. We have a long history of injuries which robbed us of much of the careers of Bond, Cairns, Vettori, Oram to name a few. This unfortunate curse cannot be blamed on the administrators, but considering our injury woes extra care should be paid to make sure those who are fit are happy, prepared and ready to play to the best of their abilities. This is where NZ have failed to the extreme. Look at the Ryder debacle, surely he could have been handled better. Astle and Fleming, two of our greats, retired early because of administrative botch ups. Players like Vincent, How and Fulton constantly in and out of the team until their confidence is shattered. Now our best player Ross Taylor has been treated in the most despicable way. Sick of the nonsense and now extremely disinterested in watching a tour of the no 1 test team without our 3 best players.........

Posted by nekomolly on (December 8, 2012, 23:20 GMT)

Well said. I agree with everything except your last line - never let the shortcomings of others get you down.

Posted by alaithiran on (December 8, 2012, 22:33 GMT)

There seems to be a misunderstanding. Ross Taylor was supported in his role as Test captain, which he could have kept if he wanted to. However, the idea was to have a different one day captain - not at all unusual nowadays, Cook has been one day captain of England for a while, with Strauss hugely successful as Test-only captain. Taylor has refused this arrangement, and even refused to play the next series. In other words, he won't share the leadership, but will only be total leader or he won't play at all. Martin Crowe's piece completely fails to mention this. Perhaps the truth is that a better team player would get more out of a team?

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 22:16 GMT)

Spot on, Martin. The NZ Cricket Board is a joke, and has been for a long time. NZ will never start climbing the rankings again with these clowns in charge.

Posted by NZ_Cricket_Deep on (December 8, 2012, 22:06 GMT)

NZ Cricket has a history of player mismanagement such as this, look at the way they treated Ken Rutherford, Lou Vincent, Steve Fleming, Shane Bond (ICL saga) and the list goes on.

The culture of NZ Cricket management must change, and it needs to do so right from the grass roots level. The NZC culture must to change. The way they have treated Ross Taylor is terrible and something must be done. Also the attitude of some players must also change, I would like to know who the players are who don't agree with Taylor's leadership style.

Hesson is a nobody. His appointment is a waste of time and he should be sacked. When he was appointed everyone knew his preferred his pet McCullum would be eventully be captain, it was as though Taylor since Hesson's appointment has been fighting for his job. Surely McCullum has some serious questions to answer too?

I am and always will support the Black Caps, this upcomming series in SA will show how much we need Taylor as a batsmen and captain.

Posted by Larazus on (December 8, 2012, 21:54 GMT)

Well said Martin.

I'm utterly astounded by the level of ineptitude shown by the NZCB in handling this matter. I also feel extremely sorry for Taylor. He certainly wasn't shown any respect.

As for Brendon, well he might have come out and said that he is concerned for Taylor and that he didn't want to be the captain in all three formats but quite frankly, he has basically stood by quietly and allowed his captain to be stabbed in the back.

What kind of loyalty will he expect from his team?

Disgusted.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 21:42 GMT)

Quite amazing to see such poor management. NZ seems like a very organised, merit based society, but haven't got their act together (ever) when it comes to cricket, in spite of flashes of sporadic individual brilliance from M Crowe, Hadlee etc.

Posted by AjaySridharan on (December 8, 2012, 20:30 GMT)

If NZ is throwing in the towel with regards to its cricket, I suggest the BCCI seriously consider pressing the Indian government to give honorary citizenship to NZ cricketers, and recruit them into the Indian national team. We are in serious need of good quality bowlers and batsmen...less said about the fielding the better. Indian team and management is probably in a far worse condition than NZ, especially because they are in a self-denial mode. NZ feels hurt since its pride has been dented...but the Indian sentiments don't seem to prick at all because we have always celebrated mediocrity and don't set high standards for ourselves. BCCI has ruined the game in the country with its shortsightedness.

Posted by katandthat3 on (December 8, 2012, 20:20 GMT)

Well said Martin. I'm still absolutely stunned about what's happened to Ross. I agree, one of the biggest stuff-ups in NZ cricket. If you pay peanuts for coaches you get monkeys. As Martin mentioned, it goes to the core of NZ cricket and it's eaten it's self from the inside out. Hope Rosco comes back soon but it'd do him well to have a break with his young family and maybe even come across and play some BBL. Deadset shambles this has been, talk about sucking the momentum out of what was developing as a great thing. Get it together NZC and start by falling on your swords.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 19:32 GMT)

Here we go again: cricket administrators screwing up the game and players who have worked so hard to reach where they are now. It happened in the WI with Chris Gale and Ronnie Sarwan. Now it is with CNZ and Ross Taylor. What are these geniuses (or Geni-Asses) in suits thinking. Leave the players and the playing alone. Concentrate on your desk jobs.

Posted by r1m2 on (December 8, 2012, 19:17 GMT)

NZ has been going downhill fast since the appointment of John Buchanan...the near destroyer of Australian cricket, and complete destroyer of KKR in the IPL....why i she still employed?

NZC has lost the services of Wright and now Taylor...the two best in their individual capacities...

Posted by legatim on (December 8, 2012, 18:53 GMT)

i do not understand what is the big deal. NZ was not going to be the 1st nation with split captaincy

Posted by Marcus50 on (December 8, 2012, 18:24 GMT)

Martin has hit the nail on the head. This tawdry affair has is hugely damaging to the NZ game and I certainly feel for Ross Taylor who has been unbelievably dignified through the whole thing. Hesson comes out of this with no credit whatsoever. His press conference gave the impression that the truth had been left behind somewhere in Sri Lanka. White has been poor. Being in Dubai was simply no excuse. He must have been in constant contact with the coach over this. If he was not he doesn't deserve the job.

McCullums interview reported on on Stuff today is one of the most disingenuous pieces I have read for a while. Where was his support when his captain was being rodgered. Why do I get the sense he was involved in making the bullets.

The Chairman, CEO and Coach should resign over this. It is simply tragic.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 18:15 GMT)

Interesting piece of article....merit to the story, but you have to have the depth to fully understand what this piece actually means.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 18:06 GMT)

Brilliantly said & nice to see someone with some merit from the cricketing community come out & say what a hell of a lot of people are thinking. Ross Taylor as an 18 yr old playing for CD was identified as being a special talent & he is certainly that - he is also a very fine person. I have been mightily impressed with him through this whole sorry saga. He is a man of integrity, which is more than be said about M/s White & Hesson & their buddies. I have always wondered why John Wright, another man of integrity quit when he did, seems we can guess huh. The entire board, CEO & coach should do the decent thing & leap from the highest mountain, but then they don't understand what the word decency means I suspect. The tour to Sth Aftrica will be an unmitigated disaster.

Posted by Thamara on (December 8, 2012, 17:08 GMT)

Recently, New Zealand have found very good youngsters who can take new zealand cricket forward. But their administrators should support their cricket.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 16:33 GMT)

And I was hopeful that Taylor and Ryder would take us back to the days of Crowe and Jones batting together in the 80's / 90's and do what they did. That's what got me into cricket as a kid..... These two could be up with with Crowe if Ryder was there and Taylor sticks around. Ryder's issue appears to be of his own doing and Taylor wasn't the best captain but at least he does what counts - scores some runs!

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 16:26 GMT)

Couldn't agree with Luke Oldfield more. If our top order (McCullum, Guptill and co) stepped up when it counted and actually played with just an ounce of consistency then none of this situation would have happened. Don't think you can blame the captain (Ross in this case) as the team simply doesn't step up. What is going to happen here though? Surely the board as to have a re-jig and White has to go? This reminds me of what happened to Bond when Justin Vaughan went back on his word. He was our best since Hadlee and Taylor is our best since Crowe.... Where is the logic?????

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 14:36 GMT)

It must be so tough for Martin Crowe, who's surely proud of the years he spent representing the country in cricket. As if his personal setbacks aren't enough, he has to watch the team go down the drain this way and so soon after a wonderful victory in SL. Felt sad to read the last two lines.

Posted by Neil_of_Perth on (December 8, 2012, 14:27 GMT)

Best comments you have ever written Martin, thanks for expressing what many of us feel.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 14:26 GMT)

as an aussie i love having the new zealand warriors in the NRL, and it has certainly helped the NZ national team. just an idea, but might be worth a try

Posted by AjayB on (December 8, 2012, 14:25 GMT)

One of the most honest and heart-felt articles I have ever read. One can see the passion, desire and angst that this man feels for his country's cricket. I have a lot of respect for what he has done to NZ cricket.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 13:27 GMT)

Interesting article. It does seem NZC is a mess. The fans like me just want the team to have the best things in place to play well and a plan to keep the game healthy.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 12:41 GMT)

As a Neutral it is really sad how things are going in New Zealand Cricket at the moment.Spare a thought for Ross Taylor.This man give you first win in Srilanka after a long time with his wonderful hundred and Good Captaincy and board fires him.This is not good at all

Posted by Big_Chikka on (December 8, 2012, 12:34 GMT)

Martin, New Zealand have been on the verge of great cricketing achievements, but still as yet to prove themselves as a cricketing greats. How much of this is down to the board? Players like Ryder, Taylor, McCullum need exposure and support in proportionate amounts. But players need to perform, that's what they get paid to do. As an ex-insider you give the view of ineptitude within the management ranks. Cricket lovers wish for a strong NZ team competing at the highest level with the other cricketing nations, producing players of the ilk of Shane Bond and past batting greats who could take games from the opposition. What successes have New Zealand had that would catapult the game up the "desirable to play/pursue as a career" ranks in New Zealand? How much of your lack of success is down to the size of the cricket economy (competition and resources) in New Zealand? Rugby doesn't seem so bad off by why cricket?

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 12:18 GMT)

Martin Crowe wields his pen with great sagacity...as well as he wielded his willow to destroy any attack It is mystifying why he isnt anywhere near managing NZ cricket affairs One hopes for the sake of the game that people like Crowe and Wright get to the helm of affairs and take NZ up or else the fear he has expressed might become reality

Posted by CricketChat on (December 8, 2012, 12:18 GMT)

I totally agree with how the captaincy issue was handled is not professional by any means, but MC implying the fix is beyond hope is an emotional reaction rather than based knowledgeable that too for a man of his stature. Whatever damage was done will be short lived. I am sure common sense and accountability will prevail soon.

Posted by Surendra87 on (December 8, 2012, 11:56 GMT)

You know, I followed new Zeland over the years and must admit that i feel sorry for Ross Taylor.

He is pretty much the only person pulling his weight! In the previous tests the bowlers performed but Ross is always performing.

A person like Brendan Mcullam is a total waste in the team! When was the last time he scored over 25?

Ps I live in the west indies so I don't know much of the politics involved in the NZ cricket but do wish it would not affect Ross batting.

Everything happens for the best and all the best to you Ross Taylor.

Surendra.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 11:42 GMT)

Awesome article. Never thought such horrendous acts can be committed by non-sub continental managements. NZC lacks basic professionalism which has seen one of the most resilient cricketing nation go down the drains. Brendon will have a tough time if at all he would be able to do something. Ross will be easily missed in the tough SA tour and the world of woes does not end there for NZ cricket.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 11:42 GMT)

Phenomenal article about what was a shocking series of events. I would be furious, absolutely furious if I was Taylor.

Posted by WheresTheEmpire on (December 8, 2012, 11:37 GMT)

This article is scathing to an extreme degree. As a cricket loving Aussie who appreciates the need for as many strong teams as possible in international cricket I hope things are really not as bad as this. Does it all come down to poor (awful?) communication? If so, like so many organisations today, the management is truly at fault. Management is, or at least should be, 90% communication. If the management is unaware of this or is only communicating upwards to their bosses, the answer is simple - replace them with them with those who know their job. I hope this can be sorted out. For everyone.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 10:10 GMT)

Well said Martin. Its a very sad day for the game here in NZ and I fear Martin is right about irreversible damage. We obviously have an organisation running the game in NZ that is rotten to the core. Perhaps the Provincial Associations could somehow stage a coup, overturn the board and bring in some old hands to steady the ship? Whatever happens, it will take a long time to repair the damage done in the last week. Disgraceful is the only word to decribe the situation. I wish Ross all the best for his future and hope we will see him playing again soon. The Central Stags will certainly be better for having him around this summer!

Posted by dcnbwz on (December 8, 2012, 9:31 GMT)

Martin, (and good article by the way) this must have started a long time ago, and I believe is a direct result of trying to run NZ cricket with a so-called corporate culture. It's a sport with individuals, not an entity that demands obedience This stems back to the beginning of Justin Vaughan's tenure, and New Zealand cricket has never been weaker. It seems that the administrators and management are NEVER at fault, it is always someone else - that someone else seems to have been the players over the years. Have we always had a board? And why do they even have a say in the actual running of the side? On the flip side though, the players must also take responsibility for their own performances too, which seems to happen all too seldom in New Zealand cricket. As I stated in another comment, I have purchased tickets to the up coming England series and quite frankly, if it wasn't for the fact that I love test cricket, I'd be sending them back. This is appalling, and the rot needs to stop.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 9:17 GMT)

Oh grow up! Try and live under a Zimbabwean cricket regime, or any number of others that are far more corrupt, ignorant, and authoritarian than NZC.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 9:00 GMT)

Another superbly penned article, Martin, and every word of it sadly true. NZC have lacked any sort of competent leadership since the halcyon days of Martin Snedden. This is one of the worst NZ sporting fiascoes in living memory.

Posted by StaalBurgher on (December 8, 2012, 8:57 GMT)

Amateur administrators are the scourge of all professional sport. Ask SA rugby.

Posted by Jburger on (December 8, 2012, 8:14 GMT)

Totally agree, I am a lover of NZ cricket and am disgusted this has happened. People getting sacked from pak and save get more dignity. Fortunately Taylor is a bigger man the NZC and will bounce back from this.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 7:36 GMT)

Written with a heart that truly cares of NZ Cricket, but I would still urge the greats of the NZ game to work for the betterment of cricket as world cricket misses something without a strong NZ team. We can't lose hope yet as some of the talent that is starting to burst through shows promise, and if we could just divert some of the natural abilities that the world needs no introduction, to the game of cricket - and make sure that their future is secured, there is no reason why NZ Cricket could challenge for world titles. Ross is a ambassador for the next generation and his loss could scar the future. Martin is right when he says that some of the great talents that we see jut vanish or are traumatized enough that they just cudnt do their best; be it Bond (didn't realize close to his potential), James and Hamish, (went off the radar completely), Jacob Oram, (could have been genuinely brilliant), who all would feel hard done by. NZ dont deserve to at the bottom but it cud still get worse

Posted by maddy20 on (December 8, 2012, 6:44 GMT)

Boards like NZC, WICB act like this and still expect the players to put their country first. I thought the knocks he played in the last test, and the much deserved win, will revitalize NZ cricket . Instead they have made a mockery of themselves. Gotta feel for the guy!

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 6:23 GMT)

Totally agreed. From the outside it looks like Taylor is really being given a raw deal. And there must really be something wrong with the system when so many players fall by the wayside either through injury or a difference of opinion with the board or early retirement. First realised it about a decade ago. Chris Cairns, Craig Macmillan, Lou Vincent, the Marshalls, Adam Parore, Shane Bond, Daryl Tuffey, Jesse Ryder, the list goes on. In fact I bet NZ have a brilliant team of players younger than Ricky Ponting who could still be representing the country in its next Test. But won't be.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 6:09 GMT)

Complete authority with no accountability.. these cricket boards (be it the WICB or NZC) will kill cricket in their respective countries. Despite having a paltry population NZ has always produced a couple of world class players and such administration will stop that too.. Matin Crowe is spot on..

Posted by Firenze317 on (December 8, 2012, 5:59 GMT)

Wow... I really hope they bounce back. New Zealand has had some great players in the past.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 5:12 GMT)

What NZC is doing? The WI has gone through some painful periods of similar in nature where the Board has destroyed players.I am from the caribbean but though a strong supporter of WI cricket I love NZ crecketers.Ross Taylor is my favourite player.I have him on my computer wall paper.He is among the best batsman for any version of the game.Why bash him with your authoritative wand.My thaught for all cricketing management to the world at large - If I am going to pay my money to see a cricket match I want my money's worth.If I feel and so is the cricketing fans of the world that Ross Taylor or KP is going to give me my money's worth,then I want to see them play.If they can't play,then management has failed.It is management's responsibility to manage all players to give fans their moneys worth.That is what they are being paid for.The NZC should review their management structure first before settting out objectives to destroying NZ cricket.

Posted by BurmaStu on (December 8, 2012, 4:47 GMT)

This is a stunning shot at NZC - I only wish it made a difference. Sorry Ross and look forward to seeing you back doing what you do so well in the future

Posted by gt09 on (December 8, 2012, 4:07 GMT)

Thanks Martin - a really compelling & honest read. Whilst tensions between admin & players will probably always exist, this current saga is quiet ridiculous! Well done in Rosco for taking a stand and I truly hope accountablity of the board is demanded by the NZ cricket public.... the Argus review certainely did achieve some of that as an inital 'stepping stone' - here in Australia. World cricket needs a strong NZ team - the 'battlers, underdogs and never-give-uppers' of our great game. Without them cricket is so much poorer.

Posted by stumpy99 on (December 8, 2012, 4:02 GMT)

Marty. Well said. Thank you for your clear voice and the integrity your actions demonstrate. I listened to Ross Taylor speak, both yesterday in front of the tv cameras and today on our radio sport program. What a tremendous person. It is clear that he is a leader, blessed with an inspiring strength and humility. NZ Cricket has deep problems. The answer is to face up to them with exactly the same character and strength that Ross has demonstrated. In time cricket will heal...because it is a game played by and loved by people who give their best. They will eventually have opportunity to follow the example Ross has provided.

Posted by waitara on (December 8, 2012, 3:52 GMT)

Hear! Hear! Thank you, Martin Crowe. THe NZ Herald, our largest newspaper, has also called for those who "lead" NZ Cricket to go. They are also responsible for the focus on ODIs and T20s at the expense of NZ players playing Test and first class cricket. Not only do we play fewer Tests than other nations, our players get fewer opportunities to bat for long periods of time. And now we have a captain who epitomizes the "have a bash" attitude (even if he is good at it, it has not worked for him at Test level). Ironic too, after our two best batsmen, and now ex-captain, applied themselves so well in the second Test v. Sri Lanka as to win the match for us. Oh, and these two Test "series" NZC has us playing should never have been allowed to happen. We have to find the financial resources.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 3:08 GMT)

Fine article Martin. How have these people have been allowed to ruin the game in this country? I fell in love with the game as a 9 year old watching our great run in the 1992 World Cup. It's hard to see how any 9 year old today would develop any love for the game. New Zealand Cricket need more people like yourself both on and off the field. Sadly, for the reasons you have outlined, it may now never happen.

Posted by squidhead on (December 8, 2012, 2:56 GMT)

Wow, Martin. Brutal, sad, uncannily perceptive and a beautifully woven argument, only a man with a deep knowledge and love of the game and an understanding of the mental fortitude you need to thrive in it could have tied this together so succinctly. But from a man who has given the game so much, with such boundless wisdom and enthusiasm, god this must have been painful to write. I'm glad you didn't sugarcoat it, this is devastating at all levels. I'm so sorry.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 2:55 GMT)

Martin - how can we take our national Summer game back. Is there a way to over throw the current administration. We cannot go in with guns like a nation trying to have a coup against a poor undemocratic government....do we cancel our Sky subscriptions over the Summer, not attend games from HRV up? Where do we start and who is going to lead us?

Posted by Ajay_Jamshedpur on (December 8, 2012, 2:51 GMT)

I have read so many cricket articles on this ESPN site but never commented, however, I couldn't stop myself registering today after reading this beautiful/great article by Martin Crowe. Though, I am an Indian, I follow NZ team a lot and support them and was really saddened by Ross Taylor incident and hence took time and read each and everything that Crowe has mentioned here.Until today, I had never heard/read about issues with NZC board but today I am really very disappointed in the way Taylor episode was handled.I can only wish, wisdom prevails and 'ALL IS WELL" in NZC and with Ross.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 2:47 GMT)

Cricket in New Zealand is now suffering the same disease that plauge West Indies for 20 years .Clearly on all fiscal evidence the Board of Directors controlling NZC are to blame for their blatant lack of logic and bias towards thier own personal whims and fancies and now they are hiring stool pigeons to fly at thier beckon and do thier own dirty work ..WHAT A BLOODY SHAME .Taylor is the best New Zealand batsman of all time ,and this is based purely on his performances in every format of the game .!

Posted by KingOwl on (December 8, 2012, 2:22 GMT)

Sounds like a letter from the heart. As a SL fan, I must say that I feel for Ross Taylor. The mess that NZC has created is beyond belief. We in SL, always have a go at our own un-accountable cricket board. But even they would have handled this type of situation better.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 1:28 GMT)

'amputated his spirit and there is no prosthetic for that' - colonel frank slade (al pacino), scent of a woman - great film!

Posted by 2.14istherunrate on (December 8, 2012, 1:05 GMT)

This is only the third time in 18 months a vboard has tried to destroy its best player for the sake of some misguided principle and of course coach power. Coaches belong on rails. Yet regularly coaches are coming off the rails and taking out the best player in the process. Which board will be the next to play silly season with its best player.In the end cricket is played in the middle and like it or not it is results which count. Wi, Eng, and now NZ.7 left to do this number. In the end Taylor will play again but only after god knows what. Imagine what would have happened if BCCI or the Indian coach had remoived Tendulkar,ot in Australi Warne had been the sacrificial lamb. Seriously it has to be the coach who gets removed in these disputes not the best players. They are expendable enough-real quality is not whether it is Gayle, KP or Taylor or any other top player. Quite frankly this coach power lark is rather like the rise of dictators in the '30's.

Posted by derpherp on (December 8, 2012, 0:50 GMT)

I recon just do a total renewing of the entire NZCB. Get rid of everyone and start fresh.

Posted by lobsterchampion on (December 8, 2012, 0:49 GMT)

This is a very unfortunate event for NZ cricket. The first blunder they made was removing John Wright. And now second blunder is the removal of Taylor from captiancy. As an Indian cricket supporter, I hope BCCI employs John Wright back.

Posted by Min2000 on (December 8, 2012, 0:38 GMT)

Leave it to the great M.D Crowe to sum up the situation with such fierce candour. I've just listened to Ross Taylor give a gut-wrenchingly candid radio interview, and it's clear that he's been put through hell by Hesson and NZC. Taylor was all class though, as usual.

Hesson's place as coach is now untenable and it will take nothing short of back-to-back innings victories in South Africa to save his skin. David White, John Buchanan and the administrators of the game in this country all need to fall on their swords, too. Can we please have some ex-cricketer's on the NZC board?

Posted by Sivaprem on (December 8, 2012, 0:26 GMT)

Excellent article! I knew something was wrong the way John Wright was treated a few months ago. But hats off to Taylor for the cricket he's played as captain and for the way he's handled this issue. This is much worse than the way ECB handled Pietersen.

Posted by   on (December 8, 2012, 0:09 GMT)

I am a ridiculously staunch Black Caps supporter, always have been, through thick and thick. But this debacle really challenges me and really makes me wonder if it is worth it anymore. The senseless of if it all, to lose, yes, effectively your best batsmen before touring the #1 team at home. It's just preposterous to have such poor priorities. Yeah, of course, there is an element of Rosco throwing his toys, but well, can you blame him?

This ridiculous self-sabotage of the team via abuse of players has been going on for well over a decade now. We've seen so many decent players go early. Stephen Fleming alone should have played for another 5 years at least, he retired at the top of his game and still had loads to offer. This kind of playey treatment needs to stop if we are ever to become a cohesive batting/bowling unit.

Otherwise we are sure to fade even further into the background.

Posted by   on (December 7, 2012, 23:55 GMT)

Is it surprising that a day after it is announced that NZ have slipped below Bangladesh in the (ODI) rankings, NZC and coach sack the captain? Why should it be? Because if it isn't the captain's fault, it must be the administrators who would then lose their jobs. Ross Taylor says he will "return when the time is right" and it's a fair guess that the time won't be right until the current NZC and coach have been sacked, incidentally taking Baz with them, willy-nilly. I feel sorry for NZ cricket, cricketers and cricket fans.

Posted by D-Ascendant on (December 7, 2012, 23:37 GMT)

I think NZC have been culpable of two horrific things over the past decade. One was putting up with the ridiculous decisions of John Bracewell, and alienating an entire generation of talented players. Secondly, bending over to accommodate the desires of the BCCI over ICL. Since then the decline has been gradual but marked, and I think the Buchanan hiring and removal of Wright just exemplified the downward trajectory. I honestly don't think there's any way back now. RIP New Zealand cricket.

Posted by   on (December 7, 2012, 23:32 GMT)

Agree with almost all of this Martin... but when / how does the NZC board / senior management become accountable? If it was purely based on public opinion or opinion pieces from the greats of NZC then Justin Vaughn would have lasted a month and the current administration maybe less. They should be accountable to the public and the players of the game yet it seems they are neither. David White's latest statements state that he doesn't believe the board should even be involved in those sorts of decisions... so what are they really there for?

Posted by ozone8237 on (December 7, 2012, 22:56 GMT)

I am from Pakistan and a die hard fan of cricket and the Legends of Cricket. I could feel the pain and hopelessness in each and every word Martin wrote. He has been among the greats of Cricket and Ross Taylor who is a talented current asset of New Zealand's cricket is really being mis-handled. Anywhere in the world when a sport is humiliated and its reputation is damaged, due to politics, corruption, favoritism or unfair treatment of the players, its the sporting game itself and the fans locally and internationally who get the hurt most. The adminstration, Coaches or managers are not the ones People crowd the stadiums for and spend long hours to watch and stay awake in front of their Telivisions or computers. They are their favorite players and their aggression, style, techniques and class that keep the fans glued to their broadcasting devices. Cricket is fun game. Its the time now when the players should come first.

Posted by   on (December 7, 2012, 22:13 GMT)

Well said Martin.

I think i represent a fairly typical New Zealand Cricket supporter in that my allegiance to the team has never been curtailed by humiliating losses, we from time to time expect that say a team like India (at home) is likely to beat us on perhaps 9/10 occasions and whilst it's not desirable it's OK.

What's not OK and what does curtail my passion for our national team is seeing this spiteful and amateur mismanagement one of our best players. Taylor in the past two seasons has lifted the team in all 3 formats at critical times.

Just last week Taylor delivered our first test win in Sri Lanka since, forever. A few months ago he was the only stand out batsmen in our nail biting loss to the West Indies and who can forget Ross Taylor vs. Pakistan in Pallekelle, March 2011?

It seems Taylor has been used as the dumping ground for the below par performances of others, i mean, is it really Taylor's fault that Southee bowled a no.ball that Gayle hit for 6? pffft.

Posted by jacobs_the_man on (December 7, 2012, 22:09 GMT)

Our greatest batsman sums it up again. I grew up watching the likes of Crowe and Hadlee and it inspired me to play cricket. Now NZ cricket just makes me want to cry (Not that i do as i'm a man)lol

Posted by StevieS on (December 7, 2012, 21:43 GMT)

Ex players like M & J Crowe, Wright, Hadlee, Greatbatch, Turner etc should all be either coaches or board members not a bunch of business men that don't know the pressures of international cricket. Our coach hasn't even played a first class game for Pete's sake, well I guess that gives armchair experts like myself hope that we too can coach our international team.

Posted by   on (December 7, 2012, 20:55 GMT)

Well written. I'm very glad someone is speaking out against this farce

Posted by   on (December 7, 2012, 20:24 GMT)

Martin, you're in a rich vein of writing form at the moment and I think you're writing for alot of NZers. Please keep going.

Enjoy the summer, Ross. We'd love to see you and Dan back for the England series.

Posted by PratUSA on (December 7, 2012, 20:21 GMT)

With John Buchanan heading NZC's affairs, this doesn't surprise me. John Wright gone, now Taylor gone (even if temporarily), Ryder only blasting domestic attacks...list goes on. May be Vettori will come back and do every thing once again plus bowling with right arm to add on and Buchanan will be very happy with his LittleJohn.

Posted by   on (December 7, 2012, 20:13 GMT)

This is so true very well written! i have seen comments round about nzc never being able to move foward because of players getting a second chance, wheres the second chance fellas where not even taking our best team to south africa get captin rosco and big jesse ryder on the plain then we can think about building up from their

Posted by chillisi on (December 7, 2012, 20:13 GMT)

I unfortunately have to agree Mr Crowe, NZC has been irrevocably damaged. I am struggling to find the words to express my disappointment and am shocked that after 15 years of avid support that my attitude of 'there is no low point that will prevent me from supporting the team I love' might have actually snapped.

I have always been able to reconcile a lot of the poor decisions made by NZC over the years in my mind by seeing things from their point of view, but this farce has proven that their incompetence knows no bounds.

I feel that McCullum has betrayed his friend and nation to pursue his own selfish agenda and it hurts that I always backed him to be in the side.

Feeling very disillusioned

Posted by   on (December 7, 2012, 20:09 GMT)

Martin, I think it is incumbent on ALL those who want New Zealand Cricket to succeed be it former players or us mere fans to take NZC to task and not let this malaise become a full blown epidemic if it is not one already. People HAVE to be accountable and they need to be brought to book. I am very very sure that what will happen is that NZC and the Management Team will come up with as much spin as they can and hope that Brendon Mccullum will rescue the situation for them. Brendon is being shielded by those who behind the scenes promoted his cause. The question that has not been asked and ansswered is what assistance if any Brendon gave Ross when he was Vice Captain to him. I know in m any teams the Captain is on his own but in a young team like the Black Caps the Management should have asked for the Senior players to show some collective Leadership and help one another. I am pretty sure Brendon sat back and did nothing. He WANTED the Leadership at any cost and now has it.

Posted by jessiedog on (December 7, 2012, 19:38 GMT)

well said Mr Crowe. We now have a captain who is only interested in himself and what he gets out of it, as well as one who is an average player who is not accountable for his actions, how is he going to be able to tell people what to do and how to bat etc... when he doesn't listen and learn himself. This is going to hurt cricket in NZ for a long time..

Posted by zwartedepiet on (December 7, 2012, 19:30 GMT)

ok, taylor and nzcricket have had a breakdown in communication. Nuffy useless cricket people, those who enjoy a passing interest but lack any real knowledge back taylor coz he has been a good batsman under his captaincy. at no stage have i read any argument which says that taylor actually struggles tactically. He's ignorant tactiacally. no imagination. and more seriously he doesnt inspire his teammates to perform. unlucky taylor, you are a good player, but to captain your country you must have tactical ability. taylor has proven himself ignorant and uninspirational.

Posted by   on (December 7, 2012, 19:20 GMT)

I agree with a lot of Martin's comments on the organisation of cricket in NZ. I take a different approach. For years we have experienced suboptimal, conservative leadership, which has lacked the courage to develop instinctive cricketers and nurture them through the skill sets required at the highest level. The Warne's and Lara's of the world rarely get through the domestic ranks in NZ. These types of men have a personality which differs from the norm, by having the courage to try different forms of expression which sometimes leads to genius. Jesse Ryder is a current example. Ricky Ponting and Shane Warne went through similar phases as Jesse when young yet they were mentored differently and nurtured through their phases of rebellion. They were encouraged to express themselves on the field. NZ excels in Rugby because we have a more robust attitude to life than most. If this expressed in our cricket more regularly like it does in Australia we could regularly be a top performing nation.

Posted by   on (December 7, 2012, 19:19 GMT)

It is ludicrous that we will try to beat the best team in the world, in their own country, without our one, true international class batsman. It is also ludicrous that our team will be lead by a player who, even after 10yrs in international cricket, is still to understand or fulfill his best role. A man who is still referred to as 'potentially great'. McCullum's record reveals his worth, he is mediocre and overhyped. At least Taylor has his ability. What a sad and distressing state of affairs.

Posted by Bring_back_Wright on (December 7, 2012, 19:08 GMT)

Well said Martin, and kudos for taking a stand. I'm so disappointed with NZC for it's handling of this, but I don't expect any accountability to be shown. They have shown they just don't care! Is there any proof Hessan always intended Taylor to stay as test captain? I have trouble believing that - seems more like he has sat down with his cronies once this became public and thought up the best way to limit the damage. I find it inconceivable that he could get through a meeting, let alone the rest of the tour without talking to Ross about the best way forward in their test captain/coach relationship. Even if he did intend Ross to stay on, he need to be held accountable for this unforgivable lack of communication (this is the coaches primary job!).

Posted by   on (December 7, 2012, 18:55 GMT)

Martin your analysis is very accurate. It is indeed very sad that the nation which produced such great cricketers as Sir Richard Hadlee, John Wright, John Reid, Ewen Chatfield and including you is going down hill. The way relationship with Ross has been handled leaves a bitter taste in the mouth and reeks of unprofessionalism. Will somebody intervene and first sack the current coach and key board members who are responsible for this myopic approach?

Posted by victoria13 on (December 7, 2012, 18:33 GMT)

Thank you Martin for expressing the thoughts of thousands of NZ cricket fans so eloquently. The senior leadership of NZC has to be replaced. Martin, we need you and other influential figures in NZ's cricket history (such as Martin Snedden) to lead that change.

Posted by Jordanious77 on (December 7, 2012, 18:27 GMT)

Great article.

I almost shed a tear at the cricketing memories i've had. The thought that my future children may never have the same emotion and memories for this beloved NZ pastime.

Posted by KhanSwati1 on (December 7, 2012, 18:02 GMT)

Absolutely agree , really shocking for cricket fans throughout NZ. I believe he could have become one the great both as a captain and batsman, Mcullum is not doubt an explosive batsman, but to be honest based on recent form he should not even make it in the playing 11 at least in tests and one dayers, let alone captaincy. Taylor is real gentelman of the game and a vey wisehead as captain,,, its really a shame that we wont be seeing him in SA and trust NZ team could not even mange 200 runs in an innings without him"

Posted by Venkat_Super_11 on (December 7, 2012, 17:59 GMT)

I fully agree with Martin and I also fully understand the agony in his feelings. It's very sad that where the management is very good, players don't perform well and where the players perform well and show promising talents, the management is very bad. I have always been a great fan and supporter of NZ cricket (unless they play India) and I feel the same about the NZ cricket as Martin. Hope they wake up and apologize and bring Taylor back to the team for the good of cricket and NZ.

Posted by   on (December 7, 2012, 17:58 GMT)

A well written article and I applaud the directness of it. It needs to be said by a person of your stature MDC. I think it will fall on deaf administrators ears in NZC as they busily maneuver to cover their own ineptitude. The NZC CEO looked clearly uncomfortable as he tried to show he was taking responsibility at the press conference. A lack luster performance from him in front of the media. Will he really take responsibility for the debacle. The NZ Cricket coach, when will he be taking responsibility for the mishandling of the affair in Sri Lanka. To tell the NZ captain that he will be recommending his non continuation as captain, in all forms of the game, before the test is unbelievably incompetent. Ross Taylor is very clear that this was the message. To his credit Ross Taylor put aside this significant distraction and gave his all for his country and the game he loves. Begs the question, who acted with total professionalism throughout this botched saga. It's shameful.

Posted by geedubnz on (December 7, 2012, 17:18 GMT)

One of the most on the money articles I've ever read on Cricinfo. Sums up exactly what I, and many other NZ cricket tragics think about the absolute fiasco that is the NZ Cricket Administration. How a rookie coach who is younger than some of the players, a head selector (a former lawn bowler!) with no knowledge of the game, John Buchanan who was hated by the Australian team (who were good enough to succeed in spite of him), and David White a domestic player who must be completely inept as an administrator, can be allowed to do this to our best player beggars belief. Perhaps Taylor shouldn't be captain - I have no idea - but its unquestionable that he should not have been sacked like this. McCullum's involvement in this is also unknown, but one would hope it has been minimal. After all, his performances don't necessarily dictate that he should be in the team...

Posted by Dagur on (December 7, 2012, 17:14 GMT)

Hard hitting but a brutely honest and candid message to one and all in the New Zealand Cricket. The state of NZC today somehow gives you a feeling that BCCI is not the worst cricket manager in the world. This statement of Martin Crow and his earlier open letter to New Zealand players are like testament for New Zealand Cricket.

Posted by elsmallo on (December 7, 2012, 16:28 GMT)

It is remarkable how many seemingly good players seem to drift through the NZ system and teams without really making a consistent impact. In recent years guys like Ryder, Flynn, Franklin, all of whom look good on the eye and seem to have the technique but make mysterious disappearances. It would be tragic to lose Taylor as he's a world-class player who could achieve a lot more than he has so far. The same thing happened to an extent to the English sides of the 1990's; then of course the WIndies in recent years with all the board disputes. It's criminal that this happens and it robs not only the home nation but also opponents of quality cricket.

Posted by cricket-india on (December 7, 2012, 16:20 GMT)

killimh shane bond's career after he played the ICL, dropping joh wright, getting john buchanan and now mishandling ross taylor - NZC is really outdoing the BCCI down there!!

Posted by   on (December 7, 2012, 16:14 GMT)

Martin Crowe is one of the greatest batsmen NZ has produced. I remember WC 92 when all NZ batsmen were clueless against the spin of Mushtaq, swing of Waseem, and consistance of Aaqib. Only Martin Crowe stood there and seemed to have understood the Pakistani bowling. He would have single handed won the semi final if just one other NZ batsman had given him partnership.

Posted by michael64 on (December 7, 2012, 16:10 GMT)

Some great insights MD Crowe! There is nothing so absurd in the world of sport as making one and only one person accountable for years of team under performance ...that one person is NZ crickets best player, a rare commodity in NZ Cricket, a world class batsmen averaging in the 40s and still improving, with his best cricket still in front of him. Maybe not the best captain of all time but not the worst either. We now send an under strength team to play the number 1 team in the world with a brand new captain, a B grade coach and an incompetent, moronic management structure...KUDOS NZC you have outdone yourselves this time!!

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Plays of the day from the 4th ODI between England and India at Edgbaston

England World Cup plans in ruins

England's World Cup plans are in ruins after another trouncing from India at Edgbaston and Alastair Cook's presence in the side is impossible to justify

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