Saturday, 5 June 2010

Nathan McCullum to receive honours, Vettori on the move (again)

New Zealand Prime Minister John Key has announced a number of honours that are to be bestowed upon Nathan McCullum in recognition of his feat in Florida two weeks ago for the Black Caps. The second 20/20 against Sri Lanka resulted in New Zealand being bowled out for 81 in 17.3 overs, with the Sri Lankans chasing down the target to win by 7 wickets. However, Prime Minister Key felt that McCullum's superb effort to end up not out in the Black Cap innings deserved rightful recognition. May 23rd has been declared a national holiday in New Zealand, whilst a telegram was received from the Queen congratulating McCullum. There has also been rumours of McCullum being added to the New Year's honours list, whilst Ladbrokes have placed the younger brother of Brendon as firm favourite to pick up overseas Sports Personality of the year for 2010. McCullum was obviously quite overjoyed by the news. "Aw it would be a dream come true, to be handed that award by perhaps Gazza or maybe Frank Bruno. It feels quite surreal, all of this, ever since that match it has been like a dream. A knighthood would be the icing on Jesse's (Ryder) cake. I can't take all the plaudits though - I couldn't have done this without the other 10 guys in that match. To end up not out has been the highlight of my career, not many New Zealanders can claim to finish a game not out, let alone do it with a double figure score."

The celebratory events were tarnished, however, by the news that captain Daniel Vettori had resigned with immediate effect from his post as captain following the match. News reports revealed that Vettori had been seen posting a letter of resignation through his own letterbox once the team had returned to New Zealand. Vettori gave a brief press conference soon after, explaining his decision. "I realised not long after I had gotten out in that match that I was no longer up to the required standard to lead this team." Vettori said. "To be the sixth wicket to fall in the match was the lowest point of my career, to not be scrapping it out with the tail feels like a failure, pure and simple. I do however feel that Nath has shown himself to be my rightful heir, and will take over the captaincy immediately." It is reported that Vettori will be attending school matches to look for another wicketkeeper to take his place as a 'specialist' batsman in the team. One of New Zealand's 3 fans, the angry one, welcomed Vettori's resignation. "Look, if he can't carry the whole team on his shoulders, then he really isn't fit to take to the field with them." The fate of Vettori's 'mongoose' bat, as reported about a month ago, has yet to be decided.

After failing to secure a spot in the Australian side last year via his freemantle-made prescription glasses, (read original article here), which broke on the flight to Melbourne after he sat on them, Vettori is once again hoping to revive his career by applying for Australian citizenship through a watch he found in a drawer in his bedside table. "I bought it from a bloke who had family in Canberra, plus I've had the watch for four years now, so I tick all the qualification boxes." When asked if he felt he could get into the Aussie side even if his qualification application was approved, Vettori was firm in his reply; "Yes, easily. Ever since (Nathan) Hauritz mysteriously disappeared during the tour to England, nobody has been able to nail down the spinner's spot, and I may take up a place in a monastery if I'm not batting at eight this time next month for the Baggy Greens - afterall they picked Jason Krejza once, for goodness sake".

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