Brendon McCullum, who turns 35 today, is our Legend of the Week brought to you by Aquavita.
McCullum was one of the most exciting batsmen of his generation. The sturdy, aggressive wicketkeeper-batsman had the ability to dominate games single handedly as he powered through overs at an alarming rate. He proved this by scoring the fastest Test century against Australia in his final match for the Black Caps, reaching his ton in just 54 balls, breaking a 20-year record held by Sir Viv Richards who managed the same feat in 56 balls back in 1985-86.
Although he boasts quite a remarkable ODI and Test record, McCullum scored a massive 158 off balls 73 for Kolkata in the first ever IPL match, which remained the competition’s highest score from 2008 to 2013.
His regret would lie in the fact that he had quite an average record against South Africa. In 13 Test matches and 31 ODIs he never managed to score a century against the Proteas and only managed one half-century in 12 T20s played against SA. In fact, he recorded his lowest average in Tests (26.13) against SA. This never stopped him, though, from becoming one of the most entertaining batsmen in the game.
After scoring a half-century against South Africa on his Test debut in 2004, he went on to score four more against the Proteas. McCullum managed 12 hundreds in 101 Test matches and 31 half-centuries, including five against SA scoring 6 453 for the Black Caps. In 260 ODIs, he managed to score 32 fifties and five centuries with four of those half-centuries coming against South Africa.
That record ton against Australia in February this year was a fitting end to his international career, as he continues to plough his way through various domestic T20 leagues around the world.