Symonds slams NSW for hiring Brendon McCullum

January 22nd, 2009 - 7:35 pm ICT by IANS  

Melbourne, Jan 22 (IANS) Andrew Symonds has lambasted New South Wales for recruiting big-hitting Kiwi Brendon McCullum for the interstate Twenty20 final, keeping an eye on the lucrative T20 Champions League in India.Describing McCullum’s hiring as “un-Australian”, Symonds said it will deprive a young player a chance to represent his state in the final.

The wicket-keeper has been roped in by the Blues with an eye to the lucrative T20 Champions League in India in October, where he will be able to play for them should his Indian Premier League team, the Kolkata Knight Riders, fail to qualify.

McCullum and Phil Hughes were named in the 12-man Blues team for the final against Victoria at ANZ Stadium Saturday.

“Is that what Australian cricket, NSW cricket is having to do?” Symonds was quoted as saying in The Age.

Symonds, who assumed young gloveman Daniel Smith would make way for McCullum, was unimpressed.

“It goes against the spirit of being an Australian I think. That’s not Australian to me and that bloke (Smith) would have worked his backside off.”

Symonds, who will continue his recovery from knee surgery when he returns to the field for club side Gold Coast Saturday, praised McCullum’s talent in the shortest form of the game but attacked the Blues for depriving a young player of a spot in the final.

“I’m trying to understand the modern world,” the all-rounder said.

McCullum is allowed to play in the final despite not featuring for the Blues throughout their domestic Twenty20 campaign under Cricket Australia rules that allow each state to contract one overseas player for the tournament.

Cricket NSW chief executive David Gilbert was delighted to have landed McCullum.

“Cricket NSW is thrilled to have secured the services of Brendon McCullum,” Gilbert said.

“With the potential losses the NSW squad may suffer depending on which two IPL teams qualify for the Champions League, it is vital that we strengthen our squad ahead of that tournament.”

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