Brendon McCullum has been named the New Zealand sportsman of the year, the first cricketer to win the title since Martin Crowe in 1991.
New Zealand enjoyed unprecedented success under McCullum in 2014, winning five Tests from nine matches, a national record. It included series victories against India and West Indies, as well
as a drawn series against Pakistan in UAE.
In ODIs, the team crushed India 40 in January 2014, and secured a hardfought 32 win against Pakistan under spinheavy conditions in UAE in December. Individually, McCullum scored 1164 Test runs the most by a New Zealand batsman in a calendar year at 72.75 and finished as the fourthhighest run scorer in 2014, despite playing the fewest innings among the top 10 batsmen in the list, ESPN star reported.
McCullum’s stellar year began at Eden Park, where his 224 set New Zealand up for a 40run win against India. In the second Test at the Basin Reserve, New Zealand were struggling at 94 for 5 in the second innings, still trailing by 152 runs, when McCullum scripted a stunning turnaround.
He put up a 352run partnership with BJ Watling, and eventually became the first New Zealand player to score a triplehundred, helping his team to a draw and a series win.
In UAE, New Zealand surrendered the first Test against Pakistan by 248 runs, but in the third Test in Sharjah, McCullum blasted a 188ball 202, ensuring the visitors levelled the series with an innings and 80run win.
He capped off a fine year by scoring 195 against Sri Lanka in Christchurch, where he also knocked off the record for the fastest hundred by a New Zealand player in Tests, off 74 balls.