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"I'm sure there'll be opportunities for them to play together," Joe Root on James Anderson and Stuart Broad

James Anderson (left) and Stuart Broad (right)
James Anderson (left) and Stuart Broad (right)
Modified 23 Feb 2021

England Test captain Joe Root has said that there is no reason why James Anderson and Stuart Broad cannot be in the same playing XI in a Test match.

Joe Root’s comments came a day after James Anderson hinted that he was not sure if he and Stuart Broad might play together for England again. While James Anderson played in the first Test in Chennai, Stuart Broad came in for the second.

Speaking to the media ahead of the pink-ball Test in Ahmedabad, Joe Root observed that it would be wrong to write the two pacers off. Praising the duo, the England captain said in this regard:

“You would be wrong to ever write off the two to do anything. The records that they have had, the things that they have produced especially in the last couple of years... There’s a reason why they are there among the top three bowlers in the world. They are consistently getting better, the older they get."

Joe Root continued:

"They are using their experience to their advantage all the time. I am sure there will be opportunities when they get to play together in the near future and, much further, down the line as well. You are talking about two of England’s greatest bowlers. The records that they set will be difficult for anyone to surpass. I feel there’s a lot of life left in the duo.”

Apart from the experienced bowling pair, England also have Jofra Archer, Olly Stone, Mark Wood and Chris Woakes available for selection for the third Test.

Depends on conditions: Root hints about James Anderson and Stuart Broad playing the pink-ball Test


Asked specifically if James Anderson and Stuart Broad have a chance to play as a pair in the pink-ball Test, Joe Root replied in the affirmative but added that it would depend on what works best for the team.

“Yes, they have got a chance. It’s a great selection headache to have all of these bowlers performing. Given the variety, we can pick a team that best suits the conditions. The best make-up than we think is going to balance things very well,” observed Joe Root.

While Root admitted that there are emotions attached with the James Anderson-Stuart Broad pair, everyone in the team is working towards what’s best for the side. The 30-year-old said in this regard:

“You’ve got to look at the game in front of you. There is an emotional side to things. The one thing that you know is that the two will never let you down. They’ll try hard to set a very good example for the whole group. That’s why they have been proven performers for such a long period of time. They have been a big part of us building such a good group of fast bowlers in recent times.”

Earlier, James Anderson had admitted that the thought of him and Stuart Broad not playing together did cross his mind. He was quoted as saying:

“I love bowling with Stuart, but it has definitely crossed our minds (that they have played their last Test together). I just hope there will be times in a crucial match when they will need our experience. All we can do is try to stay in the best shape possible, and if we do get the nod together next summer or in the back end of the year, do our best for the team.”

While James Anderson has 611 wickets to his name from 158 Tests, Stuart Broad has claimed 517 scalps from 145 matches.

Published 23 Feb 2021, 16:01 IST
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