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Reverse swing was huge for us: Anderson

Last updated on: February 09, 2021 17:34 IST
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'We knew we had to get the lengths right and I managed to do that.'

James Anderson

IMAGE: England pacer James Anderson celebrates the wicket of Rishabh Pant during Day 5 of the first Test against India in Chennai on Tuesday. Photograph: BCCI

Reverse swing was a huge factor, said veteran fast bowler James Anderson, who used it to deadly effect in England's 227-run demolition of India in the first Test, in Chennai, on Tuesday.


Anderson's excellent three-wicket burst blew away the Indian middle-order as the hosts were bundled out for 192 in 58.1 overs. He picked up the wickets of Shubman Gill (50) and Ajinkya Rahane (0) in the space of three deliveries and then dismissed the dangerous Rishabh Pant (11) a few overs later to put England in control.

"It came out well. The ball was reversing. We knew we had to get the lengths right and I managed to do that," Anderson said after the match.

"I got a bit of luck with the bounce there. Reverse swing was huge for us. The pitch was obviously slow and deteriorating so movement in the air makes us seamers feel we can get a wicket any ball," he added.

Anderson said he was happy to get Shubman Gill and Ajinkya Rahane clean bowled on a track where the ball usually kept low.

"It's always nice to see the stumps cartwheeling out of the ground, doesn't happen very often at my age, so yeah really happy with it," Anderson told a video conference.

The 38-year-old Anderson, who took 3/17 in 11 overs in the second innings, finished with five wickets in the match. The veteran pacer it was a hard grind for five days but is happy to have won the Test as the visitors take a 1-0 lead in the four-match series.

"It was hard graft out there for five days. I am feeling great. Had a good tour of Sri Lanka and have managed to carry on the form here as well," said Anderson who has so far taken 611 wickets from 158 Tests.

"Glad to have got the nod for this game, we have a good lot of bowlers here. Now need to rest well for three days and come hard again."

England's rotation policy means Anderson is not certain to play the second Test, especially with the tendency to alternate him and Stuart Broad to get the best out of the veterans.

Anderson said he would put his hand up when England pick their playing XI for the next match, also in Chennai, from Saturday.

"Yeah, of course. When a batsman gets in rhythm and in form, they want to just keep batting, keep that rhythm going, and it's the same for bowling, you want to keep that going as much as possible," he added.

Talking about captain Joe Root who was named player of the match for his monumental 218 in the England first innings, Anderson said, "Root is a great player of spin. Has led us from the front, led by example.

"Hopefully, he can continue the form and the rest of us can chip in."

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