James Anderson, Virat Kohli
James Anderson after picking up Virat Kohli's wicket. (Image: Twitter)

England pacer James Anderson has stated that his battle with India skipper Virat Kohli during the Test series in England earlier this summer was the favourite one he has had with the Indian talisman.

James Anderson dismissed Kohli twice for 64 runs in the four completed Tests – he managed to get the better of Kohli for the first time in 7 years, having ruthlessly dominated him in the 2014 series.

The legendary pacer had verbal duels with Kohli, but asserted that both continue to have mutual respect for each other.

Virat Kohli, James Anderson
Virat Kohli, James Anderson. (Credits: Twitter)

“This summer was probably my favourite contest with Virat. We’ve had a few good battles over the years, both in England and India, but this year was certainly my favourite,” James Anderson told Fox Cricket’s Road to the Ashes podcast.

“I got him out a few times but also he got some runs as well, and we had a battle on the field where there was definitely mutual respect there. It was in a really nice manner, if that makes sense. Obviously, we were going at each other, but it was in a well-spirited way. So I really enjoyed that.”

We will be keen to get Steve Smith out early: James Anderson

After an intense battled with Kohli, James Anderson has set his eyes on the prized wicket during the Ashes – that of Steve Smith.

Smith was England’s nemesis in each of the last two Ashes campaigns. In 2017/18 series in Australia, Smith amassed 687 runs at 137.40; then in England in 2019, he totalled 774 at 110.57, helping Australia return with the urn with a 2-2 draw. Smith averages 63 versus James Anderson!

Steve Smith, Most Man Of The Match Awards In Test
Steve Smith (Image Credit: Twitter)

“As a bowler you always look at the best player, and for me over the last three, four or five years, Steve Smith’s been Australia’s best player.

“He’s been the one they rely on for their volume of runs, obviously supported by guys around him like [David] Warner and [Marnus] Labuschagne recently. But he’s been their go-to in the last few years, so he’ll be the one that we will be keen to get out early,” the 39-year-old said.

The first Ashes Test is slated for Brisbane from December 8. Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney, and Perth are slotted to host the next four Tests, however, that is subject to change. The ECB have named their 17-player squad, to be led by Joe Root.

Also Read: Virat Kohli’s 82* Against Australia In 2016 Crowned As ‘Greatest Moment’ In T20 World Cup History