England in New Zealand 2012-13

Anderson plays down ankle worries

ESPNcricinfo staff

March 24, 2013

Comments: 12 | Text size: A | A

James Anderson in action at Eden Park, New Zealand v England, 3rd Test, Auckland, 1st day, March 22, 2013
James Anderson has not been impressed with the bowling creases in New Zealand © Getty Images
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James Anderson has tried to calm concerns that his ankle could become a significant concern during the English season, and has put his current problems down to troublesome footholds in New Zealand.

Anderson's body has been creaking a bit during the series, and he was seen strapping his left ankle during the second day at Eden Park, but he said it was nothing more than a precaution. Anderson can expect a heavy workload during the home season with England playing the returns series against New Zealand before the Champions Trophy, and then the first of back-to-back Ashes series.

"It's not serious. I didn't start the game wearing the brace and I bowled 20 overs without it," he told the Mail on Sunday." I just felt I felt I needed a little support as the game wore on. I've had an issue with my ankle since I was 20 and the good thing is that it dies down as quickly as it arises."

However, he has been less than impressed with the area around the bowler crease through the recent Test matches. "It does flare up when the footholds aren't great, and the ones we've bowled on in the last couple of Tests haven't been great.

"They don't seem to fill them in over here which is something I can't quite get my head around. Whereas in England they fill them in with a substance that sets overnight so they are solid the next day, here they just leave them.

"Today they did try to work on them by hammering them down with a sledge hammer but I'm not sure how much good that did.

Anderson took two wickets in New Zealand's first innings to move level with Derek Underwood on 297 scalps, although was not quite at his best and struggled to make the ball swing.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by   on (March 26, 2013, 0:14 GMT)

@cric_J Pattinson has shown more than promise! In the test matches he has displayed all the attributes of a complete bowler. He has pace, accuracy, swing reverse swing a mean bouncer and an all over intimidating persona. When he gets wickets it is usually in clumps of 2 or 3 which means he is a genuine spearhead and at 23 will only get better. If he plays most of both Ashes series do not be surprised if he has Steyn like figures at the end (average and strikerate). The scary thing is that bird could be just as good in his own way and Siddle will always plug away all day,putting the ball on a dime if needed on a flat track to get a five for.

Posted by cric_J on (March 25, 2013, 8:38 GMT)

OMG, according to Lyndon Mcpaul here, James Pattinson (who has played hardly 10 tests) is "up near with Steyn".NO fast bowler in the present lot is near him.Jimmy is the closest but Steyn is in a different league altogether.Pattinson has shown promise but that has been the same with a lot of other fast bowlers who are now nowhere in sight in international cricket !And as for your judgemaent based on the current rankings , do you really mean to say that Siddle and Herath are better than Jimmy(who has taken almost 300 wickets) at the moment ?And since you have such a keen interest in the rankings,you might just remember that Jimmy finished second on that list at the end of the last Ashes !So watch out.His rankings have taken a serious hit because last year he played 9 of his 14 matches on unresponsive subcontinent pitches,but he was still pretty good.Although I do admit that he hasn't been in the best of his elements in the NZ series and has looked tired and has just not attacked enough.

Posted by   on (March 25, 2013, 7:15 GMT)

@cric_J...Why should we accept what is non factual Anderson is rated 6th behind Steyn,Philander,Ajmal,Herath and Siddle but in my mind Pattinson is in reality up near the likes of Steyn on proven ability though just hasnt played enough tests to up his ranking. Look for a rapid rise of Aussie bowlers up that list come the Ashes!

Posted by TATTUs on (March 25, 2013, 6:19 GMT)

As far as I see, Anderson is just a good bowler. He has excellent 2 years [ 2010 and 2011]. Bar that he hasnt done much. Even Zaheer Khan had a better record during the same couple of years. Zaheer also had a good 2007.

I think I have stated this before, but alas, Heath Streak averages 28 for 200 odd wickets over his career and so does Anderson in what is mentioned as his peak.

Posted by cric_J on (March 25, 2013, 4:05 GMT)

Now RandyOz, just what is it with you ?Why can't you just accept that Jimmy is the second best fast bowler in the world at the moment, by some distance. We all know that Jimmy left all the Aussie batsmen red faced in the last Ashes.In Australia.With the kookaburra.And ever since you have tried your best to pass all possible comments on all possible articles to pull him down and by hiding behind the "He averages over 30 " stat.He added to your misery by doing well in the subcontinent as well (where your Aussie pace battery was...............) .That must have really put you off,no ?But I tell you what, your "remarks" haven't quite been able to stop him.And they won't.Come the Ashes and we will know who is "average" and a "trundler".And as for your "JMA-caused-heartburn" I would recommend some antiburns cream rather than irresponsible comments on cricinfo.Especially during the Ashes.

Posted by   on (March 25, 2013, 3:44 GMT)

I do hope Anderson will be fit for the Ashes. England will need him. Australia can take their pick of Matchwinning fast bowlers; all with averages better than Anderson's. These include Pattinson, Harris, Siddle, and Bird who have proved to be consistent matchwinners. Some may claim Bird is unproven though his first class average is more formidable of all the above and he hasnt set a foot wrong in the 2 test's he's played. Besides that ultra reliable quartet there are three very dangerous dark horses in Johnson, Starc and Cummins. Admittedy though Australia may need a lot of destructive bowling to drag England's batting to our level but with such a depth of talent I am sure they can do just that!

Posted by   on (March 24, 2013, 18:27 GMT)

@RandyOZ I don't think you have a good grasp of the game of cricket. I haven't read your previous comments, but having read other comments it seems that you have garnered a reputation of sorts here. That being said, I would like to point at the fact that you cannot just judge a player just by his/her stats. I have seen Anderson bowl and a lot has to do with how he bowled earlier in his career. Lack of wickets and an over the top economy lead to an average that now is 'well over 30'. The way he bowled against us Indians both in India and the UK was just fabulous. A player of his stature has done enough to not be just sidelined on the basis of his stats.

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (March 24, 2013, 18:04 GMT)

He's spent the last few years leading England to victory over Australia so often that they do it just for fun, leaving fans such as RandyOz rather bitter. Whether it be leading a whitewash over India or Australia or an Ashes thumping, Anderson has long proved his wizardry on either flat decks of the sub-Continent or Green tops elsewhere. What a bowler.

Posted by RandyOZ on (March 24, 2013, 12:29 GMT)

Anderson, with an average well over 30, just isn't that good. He gets talked up time and time again but really, he is just a medium paced trundler made to look good by how poor Finn and Broad are.

Posted by   on (March 24, 2013, 10:55 GMT)

Swann is who is being missed here. Panesar is a great subcontinent style bowler, pushing it through at 90kmph+ but Swann is what is needed on these greener surfaces giving it more flight and bowling 5-6 kmph slower. The NZ guys are playing Panesar like a slow seamer most of the time.

Posted by Meety on (March 24, 2013, 8:37 GMT)

As Mitty said, hopefully nothing, but IMO England need to look at workloads. Anderson & Swann should not be playing ODIs or 20/20s, as they are Test Match Gold. A "creaky" Anderson would halve the effectiveness of the England attack, & without Swann as well (assume he'll be right but just saying), the attack would LOOK less than threatening.

Posted by Mitty2 on (March 24, 2013, 4:04 GMT)

For England, Anderson is an absolute necessity for the ashes. Hopefully this is nothing. Finn and broad both have a tendency to either be very good, or very poor, and recently, the poor outweighs the good. This is only compounded by the fact that your premier fast bowler needs to be attacking and want to strike, but he can't do this nearly as well if his partnering bowler is bowling loose at the opposite end. And it is undoubted that broad and Finn can both be very loose. With all averaging above 30 (Finn probably might be under 30 because of his 6-125), and all bowling 130-140 with a pure lack of variety in the attack if there's no assistance, I believe a workhorse bowler like a siddle is needed in the attack to compliment anderson's attacking bowling. Of course, there attack looks so much worse without swann, who is very good on ALL pitches, unlike panesar.

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