James Anderson said the prospect of equaling England’s record for test appearances held by Alastair Cook was “mind-blowing”.
If Anderson is selected for the series opener next week against New Zealand at Lord’s, he will tie former retired captain Cook’s 161 test mark.
But while his close friend Cook has spent his international career as an opener, Anderson, 38, already England’s most successful try-pitcher with 614 wickets – the most by any paceman in the world. the format – had the most physically demanding task of carrying out the attack.
And if Anderson achieves his goal of playing in all seven tests against New Zealand and India this season, he will only be behind a trio of batsmen – Indian Sachin Tendulkar (200 tests) and Australian duo Ricky. Ponting and Steve Waugh (both 168) – in the all-time list.
“It makes me proud,” Anderson told reporters. “I never imagined that in a million years I would get to this point.
“Certainly, for a bowler, playing that number of games is… I don’t know what the word is… but it’s kinda mind-blowing to me because I don’t feel like I’ve played that many games. . “
Anderson, who appeared with his England teammates in the LV = Insurance launch video ‘In With Heart’ celebrating the English cricket community, added: “My body doesn’t feel old or tired.
“I love the cricket test, I have a huge passion for it. Growing up that’s all I wanted to do is play the cricket test for England and I’m honored to have been able to do so for so long. “
Matching Cook’s tally at Lord’s would be especially important for Anderson, as the ‘home of cricket’ was the venue for his Test debut against Zimbabwe 18 years ago.
“On my way to Lord’s, since I first did it in 2003… the atmosphere around this pitch is something you don’t come across anywhere else in the world,” he said.
– ‘Put on a shift’ –
Anderson is also just eight years old to win 1,000 first-class wickets, Andrew Caddick being the last fast Englishman to pull off the feat in 2005.
“Nowadays, I don’t know if it’s possible to get that many first-class wickets, the amount of cricket that’s played, there doesn’t seem to be that longevity in bowlers anymore, and there’s a lot of T20 cricket and everything that is going on in the world, ”Anderson said.
But the Lancashire swing pitcher said there was more to his ongoing career than statistical benchmarks.
“Adding hard yards is when it means the most, putting in a change for the team,” he said. “I get a lot of pleasure from it. Bowling 10 overs on a green seam doesn’t really suit me.
“I want to make a change to the team when it’s difficult. “
Anderson, however, is looking forward to having spectators present for the next rewrite of the cricket record book.
Covid-19 restrictions mean it took its 600th closed-door testing window in Southampton last year.
But some 7,000 fans are expected at Lord’s next week, with up to 18,000 cleared for the second test against New Zealand at Edgbaston after the match was designated as a pilot event by the UK government.
“It will be quite special to have people there. I’m not sure if soulless is the right word, but it’s just not international cricket without fans out there, ”Anderson said.
“As players we feel like everyone missed him a lot. We missed having fans there and they missed watching us live. “
© 2021 AFP