McCullum puts team before world mark

DUNEDIN (New Zealand) • New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum said yesterday that he put his team ahead of his own ambitions to claim the world record for Test sixes during the first Test against Sri Lanka in Dunedin.

He declared his side's second innings once their lead had passed 400 rather than attempting to claim the record for Test sixes after equalling the mark of 100 by Australia's Adam Gilchrist.

New Zealand set Sri Lanka a 405-run target and won the Test by 122 runs yesterday when the tourists were dismissed in their second innings for 282.

McCullum, during his whirlwind 17 not out in six deliveries, smacked the ball over the rope twice.

He knew one more would take him past Gilchrist's record but had made a promise to his team to declare.

"I said (a lead of) 400 to the boys so it would have looked pretty selfish if I'd stayed out there for one more crack at it," he said, adding it meant a lot to him to be recognised as a big hitter.

"It's the only record I actually care about.

"It's the only record that Kane (Williamson) or Ross (Taylor) aren't going to break as well so I should be able to hold on to that one.

"I've been aware of it for a while as you can probably tell by the way I've batted all through my career."

He will get the chance to move ahead of Gilchrist in the three remaining home Tests this summer against Sri Lanka and Australia.

It has taken McCullum 98 Tests and 170 innings to reach 100 sixes while the big-hitting Australian, who retired in 2008, reached the milestone in 96 Tests and 137 innings.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 15, 2015, with the headline 'McCullum puts team before world mark'. Print Edition | Subscribe