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James Anderson

England, PTI
England, PTI
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Ashes 2021/22 Is Set To Go Ahead With England’s Players Aggreging To Tour Australia

Ashes 2021/22 is set to go ahead this summer with England’s players reportedly agreeing to tour in a move that will green-light the A$200 million series. England’s Test specialists cricketers spoke with Cricket Australia (CA) bosses again on Tuesday evening, to thrash out their concerns over strict Covid-19 protocols for Ashes 2021/22.

Players have been given until the end of this week to make a decision by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), with the team only set to tour if an adequate number of front-liner players agree to travel. However, those fears have now seemingly been allayed with the report that captain Joe Root has led a group of players committing to the series.

Ashes Urn Photo: cricket.com.au
Ashes Urn Photo: cricket.com.au

Ashes 2021/22 Is Set To Go Ahead Without Moeen Ali, Ben Stokes, And Jofra Archer Missing And Jos Buttler Doubtful

According to the report, wicketkeeper Jos Buttler could be the only England player not to agree to tour. He had previously indicated his concerns over the Ashes 2021/22  tour and potential time away from family. Allrounder Moeen Ali will be unavailable after he recently retired from Tests, while all-rounder Ben Stokes is taking a break from the game, and pacer Jofra Archer is out injured.

Moeen Ali has played the last of his 64 Tests for England AFP/Getty Images
Moeen Ali has played the last of his 64 Tests for England AFP/Getty Images

Cricket Australia is yet to officially be informed about the development but will no doubt be breathing a massive sigh of relief given the magnitude of the decision of players. In a series of two separate meetings with England players in recent days, it’s understood fears over snap lockdowns and quarantine conditions in Australia for families were the chief concerns.

Nick Hockley Stressed Conditions In Australia Were Improving

But CA CEO Nick Hockley stressed to England players that conditions in Australia before Ashes 2021/22 were improving, with the country’s vaccination rate on the rise. Likewise, it’s believed a move to have a second group of England’s players’ families arrive before Christmas to quarantine in Melbourne has also been crucial.

Players had feared that families would only be able to arrive with them in November, meaning a hard quarantine before a long tour. But the move to let a second group into Victoria would be welcome news, given they do not need to spend as much time away from home.

Cricket Australia's CEO Nick Hockley Image Source: Getty Images AsiaPac
Cricket Australia’s CEO Nick Hockley Image Source: Getty Images AsiaPac

There could be some freedoms for families in regional Victoria. That deal is not officially over the line with the state government, but would be in line with the road map out of COVID-19 as Victoria edges closer to 70 and 80 percent double dosage rates.

The last concern for CA will now be the Perth Test, with officials adamant they will be granted clearance to play in Western Australia just days after being in Sydney. If that doesn’t eventually happen, Canberra or Hobart could seize their first-ever Ashes Test. Alternatively, the match could be held as a second fixture at the SCG or MCG.

Test specialists James Anderson and Stuart Broad have publicly stated they are prepared to tour Australia for Ashes 2021/22, as have youngsters Dan Lawrence and Ollie Pope.

Andrew Strauss
Andrew Strauss
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The Ashes 2021/22 Need To Go Ahead: Andrew Strauss

Andrew Strauss, the former England captain has advised England players to board the plane for the Ashes tour if selected. England’s participation in the Ashes series has been a debatable issue in the last few months due to players’ concerns with the strict quarantine measures in Australia. Notably, the Australian government refused to relax the stringent quarantine protocols for the England players and their families.

It is understood that England’s key players, including captain Joe Root, will decide on their availability shortly. England’s multi-format players, such as Jos Buttler, Jonny Bairstow, Mark Wood, Sam Curran, and Chris Woakes wouldn’t be willing to spend up about four months away from their families as they will fly to Australia straight from the UAE, where the T20 World Cup will be held. Some of the players will also participate in the second half of the IPL 2021.

Andrew Strauss. (Image Credits: Twitter)
Andrew Strauss. (Image Credits: Twitter)

Andrew Strauss: The Ashes Need To Go Ahead

However, Andrew Strauss earmarked the Ashes as the most significant event in the Test calendar and all the stakeholders need to make it happen by making compromises.

“To me, the Ashes need to go ahead. We are learning to live with Covid in this country and Australia is in a slightly different place. But the Ashes means a lot to a lot of people, and some of them are people that are going through a tough time themselves. There is a way of making it happen and I think we are moving in the right direction. I think there will be accommodations made and that families will get out there.”

Australia Test skipper Tim Paine (Photo | AP)
Australia Test skipper Tim Paine (Photo | AP)

While Andrew Strauss stated he understands every player’s plight, he added that they must not pull out of an Ashes tour, if selected. He trusts both cricketing boards to find a workable solution for everyone.

“Personally, I think if you are selected on an Ashes tour, you should go. An Ashes tour is not the one to pull out of, in my opinion. But I understand that everyone sees things slightly differently. But I think that between Cricket Australia, the Australian government and the ECB, they will find a way that works for both the players and their families.”

Australian Test captain Tim Paine believes the Ashes 2021/22 will take place, irrespective of which set of English players decide to board the plane. He copped flak from the England fans for his lack of empathy and consideration.

Andrew Strauss: England Should Not Be Over Dependant On James Anderson And Stuart Broad

Andrew Strauss further said the tourists would have a daunting task even if all their key players are available. He expressed concerns about the batting unit which failed against New Zealand and India and thinks James Anderson and Stuart Broad cannot be overly relied on to help England regain the urn.

James Anderson
James Anderson (AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)

The 44-year old added: “I think we are going to have to play a lot better than we did this summer, put it that way. Our top order needs to function better than it has done for a long time. Playing against the new ball in Australia is a very tough thing to do. There will be a lot of responsibility on our bowling attack. Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad will have a role to play but we can’t just rely on them to win us the Ashes.”

The hosts are the current holders of the Ashes as Tim Paine’s men retained the urn in England in 2019.

Stuart Broad confirmed that he will be part of the Ashes 2021/22 tour if his fitness permits him to play but added that England’s players still need more details about the Covid-19 restrictions they will undergo in Australia.

It is expected that some of England’s multi-format players will withdraw from the trip regardless of the final protocols that are put in place but Stuart Broad, who is a single-format player and could even have an outside chance of captaining the side if Joe Root isn’t available, has committed to being there.

Virat Kohli in action during the third day of the WTC final against New Zealand. (File)
Virat Kohli in action during the third day of the WTC final against New Zealand. (File)
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Virat Kohli: 10 Famous Sledges From Current Indian Skipper

Virat Kohli is unarguably one of the greatest players of this generation having scored a lot of runs and leading India from the front. One wouldn’t find too many players as popular as him. It wouldn’t be an overstatement to say that he is a brand himself.

His stature has resulted in him grabbing the headlines, no matter what. Thus, this has prompted everyone to keep observing him. The media and cameras always have a close look at each and every move that he makes on the field. His fierce spirit just adds fuel to the fire. As Virat Kohli has had a huge history of getting involved in sledges intentionally or unintentionally, he has been a part of several arguments on the field.

Virat Kohli, Image Source : AP IMAGE
Virat Kohli, Image Source: AP IMAGE

Virat Kohli: 10 Famous Sledges From Current Indian Skipper

10) Virat Kohli and James Anderson in 2021

Virat Kohli and James Anderson
Virat Kohli and James Anderson. (Photo by Eddie Keogh/Getty Images)

This is one of the most recent incidents which has managed to grab the headlines all over the world. The Indian skipper and England’s veteran pacer Jimmy Anderson have had their own rivalry for a really long time. Irrespective of their legacies, they were involved in an ugly incident this time around.

Tempers flared between the duo on the fourth day of the second Test between India and England at Lord’s. During India’s second innings, India’s superstar skipper and England’s superstar pacer had a verbal spat at the non-striker’s end. The two had a go at each other thrice in quick succession.

Everything started a day earlier as on Day 3 when pacer Jasprit Bumrah welcomed the English pacer with several fiery bouncers. James Anderson seemingly didn’t like it and In reply, Virat Kohli had a go at James Anderson the next day by telling him that this wasn’t his backyard.

In the second Test match, England speedster James Anderson had to face a 10-ball over from Jasprit Bumrah. The Indian pacer struck with a barrage of bouncers to James Anderson in search of his first wicket of the match. He survived the spell of Jasprit Bumrah but eventually lost his wicket to Mohammed Shami.

The first Test of the five-match Test series between India and England was drawn, and then India won the second Test. After which England won the third Test and then Team India won the fourth Test to take a 2-1 lead before the final Test got called-off due to Covid-19 scare.

9) Virat Kohli and Tabraiz Shamsi in 2018

Tabraiz Shamsi
Tabraiz Shamsi. Image Credits: Twitter

The year 2018 belonged to the Indian skipper. While he was scoring runs for fun back then, he also sledged Tabraiz Shamsi. It was the Proteas spinner who first had a go at Virat Kohli while he was batting. The Indian captain wasn’t the one to hold back and thus, gave Tabraiz Shamsi a taste of his own medicine when Tabraiz Shamsi came to bat. He kept asking him if he had his chest pad on.

The Proteas bowler barely lasted a ball as he got out while attempting a big shot off Kuldeep Yadav. India went on to win this series 5-1 and Virat Kohli went on to win the player of the series award. The batting maestro scored three centuries in this ODI series as well.

Former Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) teammates Virat Kohli and Tabraiz Shamsi had a go at each other during India’s 73-run win over South Africa. Tabraiz Shamsi was seen sledging the Indian skipper during the latter’s 36-run innings in the 5th ODI at St. George’s Park.

8) Virat Kohli and Steve Smith in 2014

Virat Kohli and Steve Smith
Virat Kohli and Steve Smith. (Photo Source: Getty Images)

Steve Smith and Virat Kohli are unarguably the biggest names of cricket currently. Seldom would one find a rivalry as iconic as the duo. However, this incident took place before the two of them became absolute legends of the game.

This happened during the Border-Gavaskar Trophy 2014/2015 where Steve Smith was smashing Indian bowlers to all corners of the park. When Rohit Sharma was bowling to the Aussie superstar, the ball hit his pads and he appealed only to get absolutely no response from the umpire. Despite that, Rohit Sharma continued to appeal to which Steve Smith got frustrated. This frustrated Virat Kohli who went to the Aussie and started to argue with him.

The RCB captain even went on to tell Steve Smith to “Stay in his limits” which the Aussie batsman seemingly ignored. David Warner then tried to curb the situation and pacified the two, this was the beginning of a new era between two of the greatest players of the 2010s as their rivalry managed to get the best out of them.

In the match, the Indian captain along with his teammates’ pacer Ishant Sharma and batsman Shikhar Dhawan, was involved in a heated exchange with David Warner and Steve Smith. Officiating umpire Ian Gould recently compared the final three days of that Test to a ‘war’ as things spiralled out of control due to the cricketers’ constant chirping on the field.

7) Virat Kohli and Mitchell Johnson in 2014

Virat Kohli and Mitchell Johnson
Virat Kohli and Mitchell Johnson. (Photo Source: Getty Images)

This incident occurred in the same series where Steve Smith and Virat Kohli had an argument. The Border-Gavaskar Trophy 2014/2015 was famous for the number of ugly incidents it had.  The “Fire meets fire” phrase would perfectly describe this situation. India’s No. 4 batsman in Tests arrived on the crease after the dismissal of Cheteshwar Pujara and was welcomed by the Australian pace attack with a lot of short balls. Suddenly, an instance on the field happened that attracted a big controversy.

The Indian skipper played the ball towards Mitchell Johnson, who soon picked the ball and attempted a non-existent run-out. However, the ball directly hit Virat Kohli, who looked in pain. Both of them suddenly got riled up after this and a few words were exchanged between the two. India’s tour of Australia in 2014 saw Virat Kohli’s rise to the top.

The right-handed batsman just didn’t smash Australian bowlers, but also took over as full-time Test captain by the end of the series. Leading the team for the first time in Test cricket – MS Dhoni missed the opening Test due to an injury – Virat Kohli started the tour with twin centuries in Adelaide. The vice-captain had a tough outing in Brisbane but bounced back with a gutsy 169 in Melbourne.

6) Virat Kohli and Tim Paine in 2018

Virat Kohli and Tim Paine
Virat Kohli and Tim Paine. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

Things got so heated during the incident that even the umpires couldn’t stop the two from having a go at each other. This occurred during the second Test match of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy 2018/2019. While Tim Paine was generally referred to as the “Mr Nice guy” all along, even he didn’t hold back this time around.

On Day-3 of that game, Tim Paine was on the strike when the Indian skipper said, “If he messes it up, it’s 2-0 in the series.”

This didn’t sit well with the Aussie skipper as he came out all guns blazing the next day in order to give it back to Virat Kohli. Things got ugly on the field and a lot of inappropriate words were exchanged between the two skippers.

At one point, the on-field umpire Chris Gaffaney had to come in between the two players in order to separate them. Moreover, he reminded both the players that they are the skipper of their respective sides. Virat Kohli then gave Tim Paine a long send-off after the Aussie wicketkeeper was dismissed. Tim Paine then ended up sledging again in the 4th innings as Australia went on to win the match by 146 runs.

On day four of the second Test at Perth, Virat Kohli and his Australian counterpart Tim Paine were involved in a verbal spat. This happened after Virat Kohli had celebrated a couple of Australian wickets a bit more animatedly than usual. That was time Tim Paine thought he had enough.

5) Virat Kohli and Kesrick Williams in 2019

Kesrick Williams and virat Kohli
Kesrick Williams and virat Kohli. (Photo Source: Twitter)
The rivalry between the Indian captain and the Windies pacer was running throughout the series between West Indies and India. The seeds of this incident were planted way back in 2017.

After Kesrick Williams dismissed Virat Kohli in a T20I match in 2017, he did his trademark notebook celebration. Virat Kohli did the same in 2019 after hitting Kesrick Williams in the first T20I. He had hit the Windies pacer for three sixes and a four. The Indian captain later clarified that he meant no disrespect.

“Williams had given me the notebook when he dismissed me in Jamaica, so I remembered it from there. We gave each other a high-five later. Play hard but respect the opponent,” Kohli said after the match. One can watch this moment over and over again!

Virat Kohli took apart Kesrick Williams during a T20 series in India in 2019, even mimicking the bowler’s celebration from India’s 2017 tour of the Caribbean. The two first came face—to—face in 2017 when Kesrick Williams used his signature ‘notebook celebration’ after dismissing Virat Kohli during a contest in Jamaica.

Fast—forward two years and Virat Kohli took apart Kesrick Williams during the T20 series in India in 2019. He smashed an unbeaten 94 off 50 deliveries in Hyderabad and during his innings, also mimicked Kesrick Williams’ celebration.

4) Virat Kohli and Ollie Robinson in 2021

Ollie Robinson PA Images via Getty Images
Ollie Robinson- PA Images via Getty Images

This is the most recent amongst all the incidents featuring Virat Kohli sledging the opponents. However, unlike the previous one, this was an absolutely “No Nonsense” scenario as the Indian captain seemed pretty furious while sledging Ollie Robinson.

The fifth and final day at Lord’s was an absolute cracker of a contest, to say the least. After England had a batting collapse, they needed to save the Test match with three wickets in hand. Ollie Robinson was the batsman and Virat Kohli had a go at him. Virat Kohli’s voice got recorded on the stumps mics and a Twitter user shared the video.

Indicating to Ollie Robinson, Virat Kohli said, “Pujj (Pujara), How boring was your innings? Maybe, that’s how you survive in a test match.” Calling Robinson “big mouth,” the Indian skipper said, “Come on, Gonna bring your sheets today?”

At that point of the match, India needed 3 wickets to bring the game home. Referring to Cheteshwar Pujara’s 206-ball 45-run knock, Virat Kohli passed a nasty comment to sledge Ollie Robinson during the fourth innings of the game. Cheteshwar Pujara’s 100-run stand with vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane in the second innings played a vital part in India’s win.

3) Virat Kohli and Rubel Hossain in 2011

Virat Kohli and Rubel Hossain
Virat Kohli and Rubel Hossain. (Photo by WILLIAM WEST/AFP via Getty Images)

Virat Kohli was just a talented star and not an all-time great back in 2011. However, even back then, he never held himself back and always spoke his mind out on the field. This aforementioned incident occurred in the opening match of the World Cup (WC) in 2011, which was later won by India ending a 28-year-old hiatus.

Virat Kohli and Bangladesh pacer Rubel Hossain were rivals since their U-19 days and continued it in the 20211 World Cup. They had a heated moment during the 2011 WC. Virat Kohli was seen abusing the Bangladesh seamer after defending a ball off him. The then youngster abused him and asked him to get back to his bowling.

The Bangladeshi pacer, later on, went to reveal that Virat Kohli used to sledge a lot, even during his U-19 days. Both of them played together in the 2008 U-19 World Cup in Kuala Lumpur in which Virat Kohli led India to victory and thus, began his legacy. Virat Kohli made 282 runs in 9 matches in the 2011 World Cup. He hit an unbeaten 100 in that game against Bangladesh.

2) Virat Kohli and Brad Haddin in 2014

Virat Kohli and Brad Haddin
Virat Kohli and Brad Haddin. (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

As mentioned earlier, the Border-Gavaskar Trophy 2014/15 had a lot of sledging. However, this incident involving Virat Kohli and Brad Haddin tops all of them.

The engaging verbal dual between the two occurred during the fifth and final day of the third cricket Test at Melbourne Cricket Ground. While the Indian batsman was batting, he survived a run-out chance.  After the incident, Brad Haddin started saying “It’s all about you. It’s all about you” while clapping his hands in Virat Kohli’s direction.

Virat Kohli appeared to gesture in the direction of the umpires, apparently in protest of the Australians’ needling which was audible on Channel Nine’s stump microphone. Virat Kohli then continued it when the Aussie wicketkeeper walked out to bat with the game in the balance. As Brad Haddin asked for and marked centre, a chirpy Virat Kohli shadowed the batsman in a fashion more commonly associated with AFL taggers. A total of four misconduct fines were dished out in the opening two Tests.

1) Virat Kohli and James Faulkner in 2016

Australia's James Faulkner (Eranga Jayawardena/AP)
Australia’s James Faulkner (Eranga Jayawardena/AP)

Arguably one of the most famous incidents of all time, Virat Kohli and James Faulkner indulged inoffensive banter on the field. The Indian captain is someone who would always give it back to the opposition no matter what. Thus, he replied to the Aussie all-rounder in his own style. In the ODI series between Australia and India in the third ODI, James Faulkner tried to sledge Virat Kohli when he was batting.

“You tried to smash me there, but you failed.” is what he said.

India’s number 3 in ODIs then gave it back to him when he was in the non-striker’s end.

“I’ve smashed you enough in my life. Don’t waste your time, go bowl.” is what Kohli replied to Jimmy Faulkner. The Aussie then replied to him by saying something in the lines of “Yeah b***h we’ll see who’s wasting time after the match”.

This video of Virat Kohli and James Faulkner sledging each other went viral as well. The 5-ODI series between Australia and India has not witnessed any ugly incidents on the field barring Virat Kohli and James Faulkner exchanging few words during the 3rd and 4th matches in Melbourne and Canberra respectively.

Coming to the third ODI, Virat Kohli was at his usual best and slammed a memorable 117 (117 balls) at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, MCG after Australia opted to bowl first. For the unversed, Virat Kohli slammed another ton in the fourth and penultimate ODI of the 2016 five-match series Down Under. However, India lost both the encounters before winning the fifth and final match to lose the series 4-1.

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England Pacer James Anderson Hopes Manchester Test Will Be Played Again

England pacer James Anderson on Sunday said he hopes the Manchester Test against India will be played at some point and the fast bowler will get to feature in the game at his home ground.

The fifth Test match between England and India was cancelled in Manchester on Friday. The BCCI and ECB held several rounds of discussion to find a way to play the Test match, however, the outbreak of COVID-19 in the Indian team contingent forced the decision of calling off the game.

James Anderson
James Anderson (AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)

England Pacer James Anderson Hopes Manchester Test Will Be Played Again And He Will Play Another Int’l Match At His Home Ground

James Anderson felt gutted for the Lancashire fans but is hopeful of playing another international game at his home ground. Ahead of the fifth and final Test against England, physio Yogesh Parmar tested positive for COVID-19 in Manchester. This had led to Team India’s training session for Thursday afternoon being cancelled.

“It’s such a shame the summer of international cricket ended this way. I’m gutted for everyone at @lancashirecricket, for the fans who paid for tickets/trains/hotels, for both sets of supporters that wanted to see the finish this series deserved,” Anderson said in his Instagram post.

James Anderson
James Anderson. (Photo by Naomi Baker/Getty Images)

“I hope it will be played again at some point and I hope I will get to play another international game at my home ground that I love so much,” he added.

The 39-year-old bowler rued the anticlimactic end to the summer cricket season and offered words of support to hosts Lancashire country cricket club as well as fans who had travelled to the stadium. Even at the age of 39, he doesn’t seem to lose his magic and showed his calibre outright in the last Test series against India. James Anderson picked 15 wickets against India across four Tests with an average of 24.66.

James Anderson, who is the leading wicket-taker of England in Test cricket, said his family won’t be travelling with him to Australia as his children will have to be present in England for their education.

There will be a lot of hectic moments for England players who will be travelling to both UAE for the T20 World Cup (and IPL 2021) and later Australia as they will have to be under various COVID-19 bubbles and compel to strict quarantine rules of the respective country. James Anderson, who only plays red-ball cricket for England, said he will manage somehow but expressed concern over his teammates who would be participating in both the tours.

England Was Trailing By 2-1 When The Manchester Test Was Abandoned Without A Ball Being Bowled

In the four matches prior to the Manchester fixture, India had led the series 2-1. The opening Test at Trent Bridge was drawn before India won the next clash at Lord’s. England inflicted India an innings defeat in the third Test at Headingley but the visitors rallied to win the fourth Test at the Oval.

India vs England (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)
India vs England (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has offered to ECB a rescheduling of the cancelled 5th Test match which was scheduled to be played at Manchester from Friday.

England’s James Anderson became the first seam bowler to reach 600 Test wickets, reaching the milestone in a gloomy last session of a rain-hit final day of the third Test against Pakistan. He is now the first bowler to possess 400 wickets in England, and the second bowler – after Muttiah Muralitharan – to have claimed as many wickets in his home country.

James Anderson is one of only two England bowlers – the other being Stuart Broad – to have taken more than 300 wickets at home in Test matches. Fred Trueman is third in the list of highest wicket-takers in England, with 229 wickets. Among the leading wicket-takers at home, Anil Kumble is third, with 350, followed by Stuart Broad (341 wickets), and Shane Warne (319 wickets).

England's James Anderson (R) celebrates the dismissal of India's captain Virat Kohli (L) during the first day of third Test cricket match at Headingley cricket ground in Leeds, England. (Photo | AP)
England's James Anderson (R) celebrates the dismissal of India's captain Virat Kohli (L) during the first day of third Test cricket match at Headingley cricket ground in Leeds, England. (Photo | AP)
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James Anderson Opens Up On Animated Celebration After Dismissing Virat Kohli

James Anderson holds an edge over Virat Kohli in the ongoing series as he has already dismissed the Indian skipper twice so far. For 7 long years, James Anderson had to wait to get Virat Kohli out in a Test match. And in the ongoing series, the senior England pacer has already dismissed the Indian skipper twice.

In the opening Test, England’s most experienced veteran pacer dismissed Indian skipper Virat Kohli for a first-ball duck while in the 3rd Test, the India skipper managed only 7 runs before being dismissed as India was bowled out for only 78 in the 1st innings.

James Anderson
James Anderson (AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)

James Anderson: There Was A Lot Of Emotion When Virat Kohli Was Dismissed

James Anderson has dominated Virat Kohli in the ongoing series and will hope to extend his dominance in the last two matches. Apart from dismissing Virat Kohli, James Anderson’s animated celebration has also been a talking point. Writing in his column for The Telegraph, James Anderson opened up on his celebration and revealed the reason behind it.

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli[photo: Twitter]

“When I got Kohli out in the first innings in Leeds there was a lot of emotion. It was the same as at Trent Bridge. I guess there is that extra something with him because he is such a good player and their captain as well. You see how much it means to him when his team takes a wicket so I want to show him what it means to us to get him out,” he wrote.

The two probably don’t share a good rapport as Virat Kohli swore at James Anderson during the 2nd Test. During the same fixture, Jasprit Bumrah had tested James Anderson’s batting skills with a barrage of bouncers.

James Anderson, who dismissed batting great Sachin Tendulkar on 9 occasions, has got Virat Kohli on 7 occasions. He dismissed Virat Kohli five times on the 2014 tour. He failed to dismiss the Indian captain in the past three series.

Sachin Tendulkar
Sachin Tendulkar Photograph: Niklas Halle’n/AFP/Getty Images

The five-match Test series is level at 1-1 and the winner of the 4th Test will gain an unassailable lead. The first Test of the series had ended in a draw while India won the 2nd Test match, at Lord’s. England bounced back strongly in the 3rd Test to hand India an innings defeat. The 4th Test of the series kicks off today (September 2) at Kennington Oval, London.

James Anderson is the highest wicket-taker in Test cricket when it comes to pacers. James Anderson has been phenomenal against India in the series, taking 13 wickets at 16.25 and a strike rate of 47.7. The England Test veteran has taken a whopping 30 wickets at 19.79 this year alone, including two five-wicket hauls.

The battle between India skipper Virat Kohli and James Anderson may not take place in the fourth Test at The Oval as the veteran England pace bowler could be rested and return only for the fifth Test in Manchester. Virat Kohli hasn’t had the best time with the bat in India’s ongoing tour of England. In three Tests, the skipper has only scored 124 runs at an average of 24.80, which is much lower than the bar he’s set at the biggest stage.

A snarling James Anderson is congratulated on his five-fer by Chris Woakes (Getty)
A snarling James Anderson is congratulated on his five-fer by Chris Woakes (Getty)
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James Anderson May Miss 4th Test While Chris Woakes Set To Replace Sam Curran

James Anderson is the highest wicket-taker in Test cricket when it comes to pacers. James Anderson has been phenomenal against India in the series, taking 13 wickets at 16.25 and a strike rate of 47.7. The England Test veteran has taken a whopping 30 wickets at 19.79 this year alone, including two five-wicket hauls.

The battle between India skipper Virat Kohli and James Anderson may not take place in the fourth Test at The Oval as the veteran England pace bowler could be rested and return only for the fifth Test in Manchester.

James Anderson
James Anderson (AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)

James Anderson May Be Rested And Could Return For The 5th Test In Manchester

The quick turnaround in the last three Test matches – to be played within three weeks – is forcing both the teams to rotate bowlers. While India has already made it clear, the English team could also go that way.

“What I don’t want to do is break them. We’ve got a lot of cricket in front of us. The Tests are coming thick and fast now. Back-to-back, it is difficult,” said England head coach Chris Silverwood to the media while pointing out the workload of his two new-ball bowlers, James Anderson and Ollie Robinson.

Chris Silverwood
Chris Silverwood Getty Images

At the age of 39, James Anderson has already bowled more overs in the first three Tests than any of the Indian seamers has bowled. He has bowled 116.3 which is just two balls less than Ollie Robinson (116.5), who has bowled the most in the series.

“These guys are giving everything, every day when we are out on the field and we have got to make sure we are looking after them. But I won’t be making any decisions or judgments right now,” he added.

James Anderson though had made it clear prior to the series that he wants to play every Test match in the series. Even though he had niggle in the lead-up to the second Test at Lord’s, he turned up to perform. He was unplayable in the first innings of the third Test at Headingley.

England’s frontline pacer James Anderson might be advised to rest for the fourth Test between England and India to be held at The Oval from September 2. The 39-year-old’s workload management has always been one of England’s top priorities so he may miss out on the Oval Test.

Chris Woakes May Replace Out Of Form Sam Curran In The 4th Test

But considering England have a long summer during the Ashes series Down Under and with Jofra Archer under an injury cloud, England may rest James Anderson for one of the next two Tests as part of workload management. With the last Test to be played at James Anderson’s home ground at Old Trafford in Manchester from September 10, it is likely that the England team management will play him there rather than at The Oval.

England’s Chris Woakes Photograph: Tom Jenkins/The Guardian
England’s Chris Woakes Photograph: Tom Jenkins/The Guardian

Chris Silverwood, though, admitted it will be hard to convince James Anderson to miss the fourth Test. England also faces a problem as their left-arm pace bowler Sam Curran is not performing well and is leaking runs whenever he has been brought on to bowl with the old ball. He may be replaced by Chris Woakes, who is fit again and has been added to the England squad.

James Anderson claimed his 400th wicket at home by dismissing Ajinkya Rahane during the morning session(4th day) of the 3rd Test. He is now the first bowler to possess 400 wickets in England, and the second bowler – after Muttiah Muralitharan – to have claimed as many wickets in his home country. James Anderson is one of only two England bowlers – the other being Stuart Broad – to have taken more than 300 wickets at home in Test matches.

Fred Trueman is third in the list of highest wicket-takers in England, with 229 wickets. Among the leading wicket-takers at home, Indian spinner Anil Kumble is third, with 350, followed by England pacer Stuart Broad (341 wickets), and Australian leg spinner Shane Warne (319 wickets).

Virat Kohli, Image Source : AP IMAGE
Virat Kohli, Image Source : AP IMAGE
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Virat Kohli Is Under A Lot Of Pressure Himself As Expectations From Him Are Huge: WV Raman

Virat Kohli hasn’t had the best time with the bat in India’s ongoing tour of England. In three Tests, the skipper has only scored 124 runs at an average of 24.80, which is much lower than the bar he’s set at the biggest stage. And his team’s heavy defeat in the third Test at Headingley has only made things worse. However, WV Raman has suggested a solution to his problems.

Virat Kohli was caught behind in all five innings that he batted in the series so far. He got out twice each to pacers James Anderson and Ollie Robinson, and once to pace all-rounder Sam Curran. Fellow England skipper Joe Root, on the other hand, has amassed 507 runs at a Bradmanesque average of 126.75.

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli[photo: Twitter]

Virat Kohli Is Under A Lot Of Pressure: WV Raman

While speaking during an interaction arranged by Sony, the former India cricketer stated Virat Kohli is under pressure himself and that people “pay a lot of attention to everything he does.”

“See we cannot really fault him. What can generally be the norm in life and other spheres might not apply in cricket always. I mean, what has happened is, there is a lot of pressure on Virat himself. We pay a lot of attention to everything he does. We know he is one of the best batsmen so we expect a lot from him. It’s similar to how it was with Sachin Tendulkar when he was playing. Even 95 was considered a failure,” WV Raman said.

WV Raman PC: Twitter
WV Raman PC: Twitter

He then went on to give a piece of advice to Virat Kohli; saying that he should just “nudge the others from begins” and “lead from behind.”

“If I was Virat’s coach, I would tell him: “Virat, enough of this leading from the front. Just try and nudge the others from behind and get them to do what they can deliver. I’m sure you’ll be back at your best in no time”.

“He did show shades of his old game/fluency in the last innings. I’m sure he will definitely do well in the next two Test matches. As a leader, I’ll tell him, you need to discard and forget this thing of leading from the front. Nudge others and lead from behind,” explained WV Raman.

England leveled the five-match series 1-1 after romping to an innings and 76 runs win. The fourth Test will be played at the Kennington Oval, starting Thursday.

Virat Kohli Had A Poor Series In The 2014 England Tour Too

Virat Kohli has scored just 124 runs at a lowly average of 24.80 in the five innings he has played so far. The 55 runs he scored in his last knock is his only half-century of the series to date. Across formats, the India skipper hasn’t scored a century since November 2019 and has also slipped to the 5th spot in the ICC Test rankings as a batsman.

Stuart Broad celebrates dismissing Virat Kohli during the 2014 series. Pic: Getty Images
Stuart Broad celebrates dismissing Virat Kohli during the 2014 series. Pic: Getty Images

In the 2014 England tour, the Indian skipper had a horrific series where he ended up scoring only 134 runs from four Tests. He averaged only 13, with scores of 1, 8, 25, 0, 39, 28, 0, 7, 6, and 20. Virat Kohli had contrasting tours of England in 2014 and 2018. In 2014, he managed only 134 runs in five Tests at a poor average of 13.40. Four years later, he hammered 593 runs in the five-Test series. Virat Kohli averaged 59.30 with two hundred in 2018.

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Steve Harmison Feels James Anderson Will Retire After 5-Match Test Series Against India

Steve Harmison, the former England cricketer, feels the 5-match Test series against India will be the last in the international career of James Anderson.

James Anderson is the highest wicket-taker in Test cricket when it comes to pacers. Even at the age of 39, James Anderson has been one of England’s biggest performers in the whites. Steve Harmison feels James Anderson will call it a day after the 5-match Test series against India.

James Anderson
James Anderson (AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)

Steve Harmison Feels James Anderson Will Retire At The End Of Old Trafford Test, The 5th Test Against India

One of the greatest cricketers of all time and a true ambassador of the Gentleman’s Game, England pacer James Anderson has defied all odds to continue performing at the highest level even a the age of 39. Former England pacer Steve Harmison, however, feels the 5th Test between India and England at Old Trafford will be the last chapter in James Anderson’s stunning career as an international cricketer.

Though James Anderson himself has not spoken about the possibilities of retirement, especially considering how instrumental he has been to England in the three matches of the series against India so far,  Steve Harmison said that he has a ‘funny feeling’ that the Test series against India will be the end of his international career.

“I’ve got a funny feeling, I don’t know what it is, but I really have got a funny feeling that Jimmy Anderson will retire at the end of Old Trafford,” Steve Harmison told the talkSPORT cricket podcast.

Steve Harmison. (Credits: Twitter)
Steve Harmison. (Credits: Twitter)

“I don’t think the Ashes will either go ahead or go ahead in such a way and I think Jimmy might just look at this and go ‘you know what, if I go to The Oval and bowl well and then I’ve got Old Trafford at the end, my illustrious career couldn’t get any better than to finish by knocking Virat Kohli over from the end I bowl at, which is named after me, and there’s potentially no Ashes in six months time,” Steve Harmison added.

James Anderson has been phenomenal against India in the series, taking 13 wickets at 16.25 and a strike rate of 47.7. The England Test veteran has taken a whopping 30 wickets at 19.79 this year alone, including two five-wicket hauls.

James Anderson Is The 3rd Highest Wicket Taker Behind Spin Duo Of Muttiah Muralitharan And Shane Warne

When it comes to the list of all-time greats, James Anderson is the third-highest on the list of wicket-takers in the longest format of the game, with only spinners Muttiah Muralitharan and Shane Warne ahead of him.

(L - R) Muttiah Muralitharan, Shane Warne, Anil Kumble and James Anderson | AFP and Reuters
(L – R) Muttiah Muralitharan, Shane Warne, Anil Kumble, and James Anderson | AFP and Reuters

Though Steve Harmison has spoken about the possibility of James Anderson calling it a day after the conclusion of the series, the international cricketing spectrum would want him to continue for many more years and deliver the same level of performances he has been.

There are only 4 bowlers who have taken 600 or more scalps. They are Muttiah Muralitharan (800), Shane Warne(708), James Anderson (630), and Anil Kumble(619).

Among fast bowlers, James Anderson is the leading wicket-taker of all-time at Test cricket level, as the only fast bowler to have taken 600 or more Test wickets, and is the third-highest wicket-taker overall. He also holds the record for the most wickets taken by an England player in One-Day International (ODI) cricket. In June 2021 he made his 162nd appearance for England in Test cricket, becoming England’s most capped player.

The battle between India skipper Virat Kohli and James Anderson may not take place in the fourth Test at The Oval as the veteran England pace bowler could be rested and return only for the fifth Test in Manchester. The quick turnaround in the last three Test matches — to be played within three weeks — is forcing both the teams to rotate bowlers. While India has already made it clear, the English team could also go that way.

At the age of 39, James Anderson has already bowled more overs in the first three Tests than any of the Indian seamers has bowled. He has bowled 116.3 overs which is just two balls less than Ollie Robinson (116.5), who has bowled the most in the series.

Ollie Robinson PA Images via Getty Images
Ollie Robinson PA Images via Getty Images
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Ollie Robinson Felt Great To Open Bowling With James Anderson

Ollie Robinson, England pacer on Saturday said his legendary teammate James Anderson helped him in tweaking his wobble grip ball technique and it gave him a perfect result in the third Test against India.

Ollie Robinson exploited the second new ball on the fourth morning en route splendid bowling figures of 26-6-65-5 as England drew level in the five-match series with an innings and 76 runs win.

England’s Ollie Robinson Photograph: Andrew Couldridge/Action Images/Reuters
England’s Ollie Robinson. Photograph: Andrew Couldridge/Action Images/Reuters

Ollie Robinson Felt Great To Open Bowling With James Anderson

Ollie Robinson was named player of the match as England completed an innings-and-76-run victory in the third LV= Insurance Test at Leeds. He claimed 7 for 81 in the match, including 5 for 65 in the second innings

“I noticed Jimmy holding his wobble grip slightly differently. I was holding it from the other side so I spoke to him and just tried to practice it in the nets,” Robinson told reporters after his man-of-the-match performance.

“It went quite nicely, so I tried it in the game and it worked quite well. It’s something I need to practice a bit more. This learning opportunity is invaluable for me at this stage in my career and luckily it came off today. Obviously, it’s great to open the bowling with Jimmy and build pressure on both ends. I enjoyed it and hopefully, I can continue.”

Cheteshwar Pujara
Cheteshwar Pujara[photo: Twitter]
India collapsed from 215 for two to 278 all out on Day 4 of the 3rd Test. England began the proceedings with the second new ball and it all began with Ollie Robinson dismissing Cheteshwar Pujara on his overnight score of 91. Out-of-form India skipper Virat Kohli got to his first fifty of the series but only to be dismissed by Ollie Robinson that triggered a stunning collapse.

“It feels like a very special day, I don’t quite feel like it’s settled in yet. For me, it’s one of the great days in my cricket career, to get my first Test win is really special.”

On taking the prized scalp of Kohli, he said: “It is an amazing feeling. The crowds here were unbelievable. The noise when we got Kohli out was deafening, just an unbelievable experience and feeling to get that wicket.”

Ollie Robinson was named player of the match as England completed an innings-and-76-run victory in the third LV= Insurance Test at Leeds. He claimed 7 for 81 in the match, including 5 for 65 in the second innings.
With James Anderson and Stuart Broad coming towards the end and Jofra Archer facing an uncertain future, in Test cricket at least, Ollie Robinson’s emergence gives England great reassurance for the future. Ollie Robinson took 4 for 25 in eight metronomic overs on the fourth and final morning.

Ollie Robinson Trying His Best To Become A Better Person

Not long ago, the Sussex pacer had doubts over his fate in England cricket as he was suspended for offensive old racist tweets following his spectacular Test debut against New Zealand in June. After his apology, the Sussex seamer earned a recall for the Trent Bridge Test where he grabbed his maiden fifer.

“It’s off the back of quite a few hard years, I’ve had to work hard to get here and do a lot of extra to get here so to get the rewards in the last four four Test matches has been very pleasing,” the 27-year-old said.

Craig Overton celebrates a wicket Getty Images
Craig Overton celebrates a wicket Getty Images

“When you are performing obviously the scrutiny is off you a little bit. It (the racist tweet episode) is still quite fresh in my memory and I’m trying to work on becoming a better person.”

Ollie Robinson, England’s best bowler in the second innings, claimed 5 for 65 – a second career five-for in just his fourth Test. Craig Overton took two wickets to wipe out the tail and seal the match. Moeen Ali produced a big-spinning beauty to get a wicket of his own, and James Anderson was unlucky to wind up with just one dismissal to his name – he’d been all over Virat Kohli in his first spell.

England 432 (Root 121, Malan 70, Hameed 68, Burns 61, Shami 4-95) beat India 78 (Sharma 19, Anderson 3-6, Overton 3-14) and 278 (Pujara 91, Sharma 59, Kohli 55, Robinson 5-65) by an innings and 76 runs

Dominic Cork © Getty Images
Dominic Cork © Getty Images
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Series Isn’t Dead And Buried Despite Hosts Bowlers’ Praiseworthy Show In England’s Win In The 3rd Test: Dominic Cork

Dominic Cork, a former England seamer has shared his thoughts on the England victory against India on day four at Headingley. England levelled the five-match series by sealing a win by an innings and 76 runs. Seamer Ollie Robinson earned the man of the match award with a fifer in the second innings.

India seemed set to stage a comeback after England bowled them out for 78 and going ahead by 354 runs at the end of the first innings. Though the tourists trailed by only 140 with eight wickets in hand on day four, things changed quickly. India lost their remaining wickets for 63 runs to concede the game.

England’s Ollie Robinson Photograph: Andrew Couldridge/Action Images/Reuters
England’s Ollie Robinson- Photograph: Andrew Couldridge/Action Images/Reuters

Dominic Cork: The Conditions On The 4th Day Of The 3rd Test Helped England

Speaking on air after the game, Dominic Cork hailed England for maintaining the pressure consistently without leaking runs. The cricketer-turned-commentator opined that the conditions hugely helped the hosts in building pressure and taking wickets.

“Test cricket is hard enough when you are trying to get a total but when the opposition are not giving away easy runs… I think it was the pressure, the conditions helped England in the morning, they swung the ball put India under pressure took the wickets.,”

Dominic Cork Photo : AFP
Dominic Cork Photo: AFP

Dominic Cork was also delighted to see England’s batting line-up shaping up well sans Joe Root. However, Dominic Cork warned as the series remains alive and it could go either way.

“And if you look at the way England batted, this is the first time the top-4 have got fifties since 2013. So that shows the improvement in England’s top-4 and also Joe Root is in the form of his life, put that all together and I think ultimately England outplayed India.

“But this series is not dead and buried. We go to The Oval, flatter pitch, 2 matches to go… I don’t think anybody can predict the results,” Dominic Cork said.

England, yet again, produced a brilliant spell of fast bowling to dismantle the Indian batting line-up, taking eight wickets in the first session on Day 4 to bowl out the visitors for 278 in the second innings and win the 3rd Test by an innings and 76 runs.

The emphatic win at Headingley in Leeds helped the hosts level the five-match series at 1-1. Ollie Robinson was the star of the show on Day 4 for England, taking his 2nd five-wicket haul in Tests. James Anderson, Craig Overton, and Moeen Ali were also amongst the wickets as the Indian batsmen crumbled under pressure.

Dominic Cork: England Bowlers Constantly Swung The Ball Unlike Indian Bowlers

Dominic Cork felt England bowlers had full knowledge of the conditions and knew how to create wicket-taking angles and bowl the right lengths.

“England bowlers know these conditions, know this ground and understand that 4th-5th stump line that makes batsmen play at times. They also bowl slightly wide of the crease and create an angle. They make it look like you have got to play at the balls and they were also a little bit fuller,” Dominic Cork  added.

Virat Kohli, Image Source : AP IMAGE
Virat Kohli, Image Source: AP IMAGE

In contrast, he thought the Indian bowlers weren’t on point. Dominic Cork further pointed to Indian skipper Virat Kohli’s words about the England bowlers not allowing any easy runs.

“The Indian bowlers, their lengths were not the same as their English counterparts. England constantly swung the ball… Virat Kohli said at the presentation that England bowlers didn’t let them off the hook at any stage, they put them under pressure and didn’t allow easy runs,” Dominic maintained.

The two sides will meet at the Oval on the 2nd of September. India has only won twice at the venue, the last of which came in 1971. Hence, the hosts hold the upper hand going into the game.

Resuming at an overnight score of 215 for 2, India’s second innings folded in 99.3 overs with England pacer Ollie Robinson claiming five wickets. India was bundled out for a paltry 78 in their first innings on an opening day. England then posted 432 in their first innings to take a mammoth lead of 354 runs. India lost their last eight wickets for 63 runs in the morning session on Day 4 to hand England a convincing win.

England 432 (Root 121, Malan 70, Hameed 68, Burns 61, Shami 4-95) beat India 78 (Sharma 19, Anderson 3-6, Overton 3-14) and 278 (Pujara 91, Sharma 59, Kohli 55, Robinson 5-65) by an innings and 76 runs

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