Dominic Cork, speaking on Sky Sports’ The Cricket Debate podcast, said that England should have “one hundred per cent” picked James Anderson for the second Test against West Indies, comparing him and Stuart Broad to other legendary fast-bowling pairs from the past.
Anderson took three wickets in the Southampton Test, all in the first innings, before being excluded from the bowling attack for the second Test along with Mark Wood, with Stuart Broad and Sam Curran making their way into the playing XI. Cork said that Anderson should have been part of the team as the conditions at Emirates Old Trafford, his home ground, would have suited his style of bowling.
“One hundred per cent [Anderson should have played],” Cork said. “Unless he comes to me as captain or chairman of selectors and says ‘I don’t think I can get through this Test’, and I don’t think he has said that, he plays because of his class and the bowler he’s been.
“I played in Manchester for five years and know there is cloud. Before there was a big hotel there was a little hotel and every morning I woke up for a four-day game I pulled back my curtains and then shut them again because it was raining!
“I didn’t turn up to too many matches against West Indies to find Courtney Walsh or Curtly Ambrose left out.”https://t.co/N0n1hUj5qU
— Wisden (@WisdenCricket) July 16, 2020
“Anderson is one of the best swing bowlers we have ever had — why wouldn’t you play him? I don’t get it. He has hardly played any cricket recently, is coming to the end of his career, and wants more wickets.”
Cork went on to compare Anderson and Broad, who have played 116 Tests together, to other iconic pairs from the past, saying that the two should be allowed to operate in tandem, given their wealth of experience.
“Broad and Anderson are of a similar ilk to Curtly Ambrose and Courtney Walsh, Waqar Younis and Wasim Akram – we have to give them their time to keep playing together.
“As a senior bowler, you know what you have to do to get through a Test match.”