Home » James Anderson says he is in the best shape of his career but knows England Test place ‘not a given’

James Anderson says he is in the best shape of his career but knows England Test place ‘not a given’

James Anderson feels in the best shape of his career but says his England Test place is “not a given” ahead of this summer’s home fixtures against West Indies and Sri Lanka.

The England paceman, who turns 42 in July, became the first seamer and third bowler overall, after spinners Muttiah Muralitharan and Shane Warne, to reach 700 Test wickets when he dismissed India’s Kuldeep Yadav in the final Test at Dharamsala on Saturday.

Captain Ben Stokes said after the 4-1 series defeat that he saw no end in sight for Anderson and the man himself believes “he is not getting any worse”.

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Nasser Hussain says Anderson reaching 700 Test wickets is a ‘phenomenal’ achievement and now the great Shane Warne’s haul of 708 scalps will be in his sights

Anderson said on his Tailenders podcast for the BBC: “I’m really excited for the summer. I’m definitely in the best shape I’ve ever been in.

“I’m not getting any worse. I like where my game is at and I still have that enjoyment of turning up every day and trying to get better in the nets.

“My place in the team is not a given, so I’ve got to work hard to prove I’m worth a place in the summer.”

Anderson: I did not celebrate 700th Test wicket

England's James Anderson (Associated Press)
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James Anderson: ‘I’m not getting any worse. I like where my game is at and I still have that enjoyment of turning up every day and trying to get better in the nets’

With Anderson’s milestone wicket coming amid an innings loss and heavy series defeat, he said there was “nothing to celebrate”.

He added: “My dad was here so I had a drink with my dad, which was nice. He was more excited than I was.

“Maybe I would’ve felt more excited if we’d have won the Test or the series.

“I don’t know how I felt, really. I didn’t really celebrate, I’ll be honest. There’s nothing to celebrate.

“I don’t play cricket to get personal milestones. I want to win games. I love playing a team sport, that’s when I get the biggest buzz. So I’m a little flat because we lost 4-1 in the series.”

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