England’s leading fast bowler in Test cricket, James Anderson achieved an incredible feat when he took the field for the side in the second Test of the series against South Africa on Thursday. Anderson, who holds the record for most wickets in the longest format of the game for his side, featured in his 100th Test in England – making him the first cricketer in the history of the format to reach the feat in a single country.
Anderson, who turned 40 last month, has played in 174 Tests so far, has taken a staggering 658 wickets in the format and currently stands at third position in the list of highest wicket-takers – only behind Sri Lanka’s Muttiah Muralitharan (800) and Australia’s Shane Warne (708).
Batting great Sachin Tendulkar (94 Tests) stands second in the list for most Tests in a country (India), while Ricky Ponting (92 Tests, Australia) and Anderson’s fellow teammate Stuart Broad (91 Tests, England) are third and fourth respectively.
Earlier in the second Test, South Africa won the toss and opted to bat at Old Trafford. England are trailing the series 0-1, having conceded a crushing innings-and-12-runs loss in the first match at Lord’s. It was the first defeat for England since the captain and coach duo of Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum were appointed in the roles in the longest format of the game. They were on a four-match winning streak, defeating New Zealand and India.
“There’s a little bit overhead but we’ve got to play what’s in front of us and it looks quite dry, hence why we’ve gone with the extra spin option with Simon Harmer,” said South Africa captain Dean Elgar at the toss.
“When you go with two spinners, you have to back yourself, go positive and bat first…Marco Jansen misses out, he did nothing wrong in the first game but it is just horses for courses.”
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