England won the first Test match against India which was played in Chennai by 227 runs after brilliant performances from Joe Root with the bat and James Anderson and Jack Leach with the ball. In fact, Joe Root said that James Anderson’s brilliant spell on day 5 in which he picked 3 wickets in a short time, reminded him of Andrew Flintoff.
Joe Root hit 218 and 40 and was named the Player of the Match, and got help from Ben Stokes, Dom Sibley who also scored half-centuries in the first innings as well. It was Dom Bess, who took 4 wickets in the first innings, and then Jack Leach who took four as well in the second innings as well, to keep India to 192.
James Anderson’s spell was like Andrew Flintoff to Justin Langer and Ricky Ponting in 2005: Joe Root
However, the impact spell came in India’s second innings on day five came from James Anderson, who first got rid of a well set Shubman Gill for 50, by clean bowling him with an in-dipper. And then 3 balls later, removed vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane as well for a duck, with another similar delivery.
Rishabh Pant, who looked good for his 11 runs in the second innings, was made to play a false shot and was caught by captain Joe Root himself, pegging India’s chances back of an unlikely win or even a draw. Anderson finished with figures of 3/17 in 11 overs and helped Jack Leach, who picked up 4/76, keep the pressure on Indian batsmen throughout.
Joe Root lauded James Anderson’s terrific spell in the second innings, and compared his bowling with that of former all-rounder Andrew Flintoff’s similar spell in the 2005 Ashes Test series, during the second match at Edgbaston. He had removed Justin Langer and Ricky Ponting as Australia looked to chase down 282 runs to win the Test match.
“It reminded me a little bit of Flintoff in ’05 and the impact of that over to Ponting and Langer, but in the context of this game it was huge,” said Joe Root about James Anderson’s brilliant spell of bowling.
James Anderson now sits at 611 wickets in 158 Test matches, just 8 wickets shy of Anil Kumble’s record of 619 scalps. Shane Warne (708) and Muttiah Muralitharan (800) are the top two wicket-takers in Test history.