Sachin to open, Viv Richards to captain McCullum's all-time XI

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Sachin to open, Viv Richards to captain McCullum's all-time XI

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Arun S Kaimal

06/27/2016

Indian legend Sachin Tendulkar is the only Indian cricketer to find a place in former New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum’s‘all-time cricketing XI’. The Kiwi picked West Indian legend Viv Richards as the captain of the side, which also includes Chris Gayle, Ricky Ponting, and Jacques Kallis.

In a video for Lord’s, where McCullum just completed a domestic T20 stint with Middlesex, the Kiwi was asked to pick his ‘all-time cricketing XI’ with the criteria being that he must have played with or against or have been influenced by those selected.

The Kiwi great opted for an opening combination of Chris Gayle and Sachin Tendulkar, preferring destructive batsmen at the top. Former Australian skipper Ricky Ponting will bat at No.3 in McCullum’s XI.

"I wanted someone destructive at the top of the order. Chris Gayle – there ain’t much better than that," McCullum told lords.org.

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"Obviously, Sachin can bat for days. Ricky Ponting is another man with phenomenal statistics, he takes the game on and even if you lose two early wickets, he’s still going to come on and play his shots and be aggressive."

The No.4 and No.5 spots went two West Indian legends Brian Lara and Viv Richards respectively with the latter captaining the side.

"(Lara) can hopefully take the game away in a session. Sir Viv Richards comes in next and captains the side as well, with his charm, his swagger and his ability to hit the ball out of the park," said McCullum.

South African great Jacques Kallis comes into the team as the all-rounder and will bat at No.6, while Adam Gilchrist will bat at No.7 and will also take up wicket-keeping duties.

Obviously, Sachin can bat for days. Ricky Ponting is another man with phenomenal statistics, he takes the game on and even if you lose two early wickets, he’s still going to come on and play his shots and be aggressive."

"At number six I’ve gone for the greatest all-rounder in my opinion of all time, Jacques Kallis, he’s a bit lower in the batting order than he’s used to but I’m sure he’ll find his way, he’s an adaptable man.

"Adam Gilchrist as wicketkeeper at seven, on the back of that top six I think he can come in and ice it off pretty quickly,” said the Kiwi great.

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McCullum opted to include two of his fellow countrymen in the bowling line-up alongside Australians Shane Warne and Mitchell Johnson.

"Johnson terrorised the opposition for years on end he can also swing the willow as well if need be, (while) Warne speaks for himself.

"Then I’ve gone for two Kiwis. That’s purely because when I was captain of New Zealand, I said I’d never change (Boult and Southee) for the world.

"I saw them change us from an average Test team to a much harder to beat Test team, because of their ability to get 20 wickets, “ McCullum told lords.org.

McCullum’s all-time cricketing XI

Chris Gayle, Sachin Tendulkar, Ricky Ponting, Brian Lara, Viv Richards (c), Jacques Kallis, Adam Gilchrist, Mitchell Johnson, Shane Warne, Tim Southee, Trent Boult

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