Anderson always tough to face: Labuschagne

Prameyanews English

Published By : Prameya News Bureau | May 17, 2024 IST

James Anderson

New Delhi, May 17:  A fast bowler taking 700 Test wickets and playing for nearly two decades is hard to digest. But for veteran English pacer James Anderson, it has been a wonderful and enjoyable journey.

Anderson recently announced that he will retire from international cricket after England's first Test of their upcoming home summer against West Indies at Lord's, starting on July 10.

Anderson, 41, became the third bowler after Shane Warne and Muttiah Muralitharan to reach the landmark of 700 Test wickets – the most by any fast bowler - earlier this year during England’s fifth and final match of their India tour at Dharamshala.

Following Anderson’s announcement of retiring from the game after England’s opening Test against the West Indies at Lord’s in July, Australia top-order batter Marnus Labuschagne paid tribute to the veteran pacer, saying he had to lift standards of his game when facing him.

Last week, Anderson announced he would end his playing career following the Lord’s Test against the West Indies, starting on July 10. The prolific right-arm fast-bowler had earned 187 Test caps in an illustrious long career for England since his debut in 2003.

Earlier this year, Anderson became the third bowler after Shane Warne and Muttiah Muralitharan to reach the landmark of 700 Test wickets, the most by any fast-bowler, during England’s fifth and final match of their India tour at Dharamshala in March.

"Jimmy’s a phenomenal bowler and still is, his skill, his understanding of conditions. You just look at when England went to India and his ability to navigate those conditions and be so effective and be able to create opportunities.

"Even though over the years he has dropped a bit of pace, but his skills are just immaculate, so it’s going to be sad to see the end for Jimmy because I think he has added so much for the game. His durability speaks volumes of him as a bowler and what he's done is just unheard of.

"When he's on top you're just trying to find your way out. We've had some good battles over my time – the last Ashes was a pretty good battle at Lord's and we've had some good county cricket battles. I think he got me out at Old Trafford a few years ago. You always lift your game to a new standard when Jimmy's out on the field," said Labuschagne to BBC, where he's contracted to play for Glamorgan in County Championship.

Anderson and Stuart Broad retiring in less than a year means England have really large shoes to fill in terms of their Test bowling line-up, as they are now devoid of a combined 354 Test matches of experience from the veteran fast-bowling duo. But Labuschagne feels there’s enough talent in England to take on from Anderson and Broad in the Test side.

"I think one thing for English cricket is you've got some really quality young bowlers coming through and that's really exciting. I mean the likes of (Matthew) Potts, (Josh) Tongue, Cookie (Sam Cook), from Essex, Ollie (Robinson), there's some good talent and it will be nice to see English bowlers develop over the next few years.

"I think the question that’s always on people's mind is durability and to have the likes of Anderson and Broad just be there, year in year out, bodies always good, getting through Test matches, that’s always the next step. I think the skills and ability are there, but it’s a different thing. Jimmy's almost played 200 Test matches, so to have that is very special," he concluded.

James Andersons is hard to replace. His contributions to world cricket is immense. His fitness, never tiring attitude and will to excel are very rare. He would be sincerely missed as a player, but may be after retirement he will continue to contribute to the game in a different role. (With IANS support)

    Tags
  • Marnus Labuschagne
  • Test Cricket
  • James Anderson

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