England Test caps record next for Anderson

·2-min read

James Anderson has become well used to rewriting the history books but even he accepts there is something "mind-blowing" about the next landmarks on his horizon.

When the 38-year-old takes the field against New Zealand next week at Lord's he will equal Alastair Cook's England record of 161 Test caps, a quite remarkable feat for a fast bowler.

Should he achieve his stated goal of playing all seven matches this northern summer, Anderson would sit third on the sport's all-time list, behind only India great Sachin Tendulkar (200) and former Australia captains Steve Waugh and Ricky Ponting (both 168).

Anderson is already the most prolific seamer in Test cricket, with 614 wickets, and now sits just eight short of the 1,000 mark in his first-class career.

That is a feat which has become rare in the era of Twenty20 paydays and workload management, with Andy Caddick the last English paceman to do so in 2005 and spinner Robert Croft two years later.

"For a bowler to play this amount of games, I don't know what the word is, but it's a bit mind-blowing to me," Anderson said.

"It does make me feel proud... I don't feel like I've played that many games. My body doesn't feel old or tired.

"I just absolutely love Test cricket, I've got a huge passion for it.

The current injury plight of one of Anderson's current teammates, Jofra Archer, is a timely reminder that longevity is not just a function of the professionalism and dedication the Lancastrian is renowned for - as he heads into an 18th international season since he first wore the Three Lions.

"Touch wood, I've not had career-threatening injuries. To get to 38 and be in that position makes me feel really privileged," Anderson said.

It is likely that when the landmark 1,000th wicket does arrive, there will at least be supporters in attendance to mark the occasion.

Anderson celebrated his 600th Test wicket behind closed doors at a locked down Ageas Bowl last year and is excited by the prospect of some normality returning, with crowds of 7,500 at Lord's and up to 18,000 at Edgbaston after the second Test was nominated as a pilot event.