• I want to get somewhere near to McGrath: James Anderson

    James Anderson became only the third pacer in the history of Test cricket to pick 500 wickets.

    James Anderson England
    James Anderson celebrates after taking his 500th Test wicket. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)

    35-year old England fast bowler James Anderson became the first Englishman and just the third pacer to reach the 500-Test wicket milestone, on the day 2 of the third Test match against West Indies. The seasoned campaigner said that he hopes to get ‘somewhere near” to Australian legendary bowler Glenn McGrath, after becoming the latest addition to the elite club.

    McGrath has 563 Test wickets to his name, while Courtney Walsh has picked 519, playing for West Indies. Anderson is currently playing his 129th Test match. He has represented the Three Lions in 194 ODIs and 19 T20Is, picking 269 and 18 wickets respectively.

    “I’m just trying to stay fit and stay on the field,” Anderson, set to be England’s spearhead during their upcoming Ashes defence in Australia, told Sky Sports after stumps. “I’m loving playing cricket at the moment. I just want to keep playing as long as possible,” he added.
    “If I keep on playing for the next couple of years I might get somewhere near (McGrath’s tally).

    I am relieved: Anderson

    The fast bowler went wicketless in the 2nd innings of the 2nd Test match at Headingly, and was stranded on 499 after the first innings of the ongoing Test at Lord’s, as his team-mate Ben Stokes wrecked havoc with 6/22.”It’s a bit surreal,” the Lancashire paceman said. “I’m more relieved to get to get it out of the way, to be honest.” Anderson, who took his first Test wicket on debut against Zimbabwe at Lord’s in 2003, added: “It’s such a special place for me – to get my first wicket and 500th here will live with me a long time.”

    It wasn’t a cake walk, as Jimmy was down with injuries- stress fracture in 2006, and was limited to net bowling. “There were some dark times,” recalled Anderson. “I got injured, left out of the side. It just made me more determined to improve. “I knew I had some skills. I used to be able to bowl fast! I just tried to develop that and get back out there.”