The game of cricket has seen towering cricketers in its illustrious history and some even change cricketing landscapes for their countries to a whole new level.
Allan Border hard-nosed attitude brought the best out of an Australian team who would then replicate the same culture and philosophy to rule the cricketing world for a decade in 1990s-2000s.Allan Border was known for playing it hard and gutsing out when going was tough in situations.
Imran Khan with larger than life persona captained Pakistan and exhibited spells of cricketing genius with bat and ball to turn average Pakistan outfit into World Beaters in 1992 World Cup in Australia.
New Zealand never had such an iconic figure since the retirement of Martin Crowe who was inspirational in words and deeds throughout his career.
Brendon McCullum made his debut in 2004 and came on the international scene as surreal dasher of a cricket ball.He played many innings that epitomized his fast paced counter attacking approach to the game.He has played many noteworthy innings in his career.
His stellar century in T20 Cricket against Australia that saw him playing leg-side flicks and executing some of most outrageous hitting against sheer pace of Shaun Tait was worth remembering.All the cricketing fraternity stood up and took notice of that there is something more to him than being just a dasher.
Brendon McCullum ascent to the role of captaincy in the year 2013 against South Africa came as there were rumors of disharmony between him and Ross Taylor over the issue.
The team results had gone down to their lowest ebb and he was chosen as an ideal candidate to steer the reins of the New Zealand and bring them back to their previous levels that made competitive side in any format.
Brendon McCullum term as a skipper started on a bad note against South Africa. He quickly galvanized a core set of players to make New Zealand competitive again and compete with the big guns like India and Australia.
The watershed moment in terms of test batting career came when he struck a double century and then a triple century against India at home in a test series pulverizing their bowling attack to all parts of the ground.
He made rapid strides and showed elements in his batting that the world had never quite seen in his first half of his internationall career.
New Zealand went to tour UAE to face Pakistan who had annihilated the world no.1 team Australia by defeating them in both the tests in an emphatic fashion.
The Kiwis went 1-0 down but the last match saw McCullum play one of the audacious innings of his career mercilessly slaughtering the likes of Yasir Shah and Zulfiqar Babar to setup a victory over hosts and leveling the series.
The effort provided huge boost to a team who now had the self-belief to beat good teams due to inspiration provided by Skipper McCullum.
The New Zealand resurgence did not stop there as they went to play great cricket in England in tests that year with new stars rising in the ranks like Trent Boult,Tim Southee,Adam Milne and BJ Watling.
The World Cup 2015 saw some spell binding moments as the cricket world saw McCullum decimate bowlers like Finn and coming down the pitch and carving him for fours and sixes.
Probably the highlight of his career would be the terrific assault on world best bowler Dale Steyn at Eden Park and demonstrating the will to take his team to first ever finals of a Cricket World Cup.
Brendon McCullum will long be remembered in folklore’s of cricket as the individual who changed the cricketing landscape for his country.He was pivotal in the resurgence of his team due to sheer charisma and approach towards the game of cricket.