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James Anderson faces Stuart Broad at darts ahead of Boxing Day Test | Cricket News

By December 25, 2019 No Comments
James Anderson faces Stuart Broad at darts ahead of Boxing Day Test | Cricket News

James Anderson: “I think that love for my job and playing for England is part of the reason I am hungry to keep playing”

Last Updated: 25/12/19 11:22am

7:54

With the World Darts Championship in full swing, England seamers James Anderson and Stuart Broad had a game of arrows in South Africa

With the World Darts Championship in full swing, England seamers James Anderson and Stuart Broad had a game of arrows in South Africa

James Anderson tops Stuart Broad when it comes to the number of Test wickets – but the latter took the bragging rights in a pre-Christmas darts clash!

The showdown was simple, with the seamers needing to whittle their score down to zero having started on the amount of Test scalps they have claimed – 575 in Anderson’s case, 471 in Broad’s.

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Broad admitted at the start of the game he “used to watch a little bit of darts but doesn’t really play” but he belied that by taking out double 15 to triumph against his great mate and new-ball partner.

“Maybe I’ll get a go at Ally Pally now!” said a beaming Broad as he celebrated.

That was gutting for Anderson, who has played on the Alexandra Palace stage against Sir Alastair Cook and, according to Broad, carries a darts shirt on tour with his name on the back!

But much better news for the 37-year-old is his fitness, with Anderson now fully over the calf injury that wrecked his Ashes and set to play his 150th Test, against South Africa from Boxing Day.

The paceman will be the ninth man to that milestone but the first out-and-out bowler.

“I’ve not really thought about it too much as I have been so focused on getting fit again and ready for this series,” said Anderson. “I can’t quite get my head around the fact I have managed to stay around for so long.

“There have been lots of ups and downs along the way. When I started in the early 2000s I was in and out of the side with injuries and you don’t know where your next wicket is coming from sometimes.

0:43 Broad says he is so proud of England team-mate Anderson as he prepares for his 150th Test

Broad says he is so proud of England team-mate Anderson as he prepares for his 150th Test

“I have really enjoyed the last 10 years because of understanding my role in the team and getting better as a bowler.

“I think that love for my job and playing for England is part of the reason I am hungry to get back and keep playing.”

Anderson missed the tour of New Zealand last month, one on which England struggled to prise wickets on docile surfaces as they lost the two-match series 1-0 to the Black Caps.

But Broad believes South Africa is the greatest place on the planet to bowl and says England’s attack should be relishing getting going.

“I think South Africa, stats-wise, is the best place to bowl in the world. To me, that’s not the balls, that’s the pitches,” said Broad, who snared 6-17 as England beat South Africa in a Test in Johannesburg in January 2016.

1:51 Atherton’s rearguard, Stokes’ onslaught and Broad’s 6-17 – relive some of England’s top Test moments in South Africa

Atherton’s rearguard, Stokes’ onslaught and Broad’s 6-17 – relive some of England’s top Test moments in South Africa

“The New Zealand pitches were slow, nothing really going on so it made the balls look like they weren’t really doing anything.

“You bowl at the Wanderers or Pretoria with potentially a bit of pace and bounce, then the ball looks like it’s doing something.

“There wasn’t anything for the top of off stump in New Zealand – Neil Wagner got the most amount of wickets by bowling short, as well as full tosses and slower balls.

1:07 Michael Atherton says he would not at all be surprised to see England pick five seamers for the first Test against South Africa, which starts on Boxing Day

Michael Atherton says he would not at all be surprised to see England pick five seamers for the first Test against South Africa, which starts on Boxing Day

“South Africa has proved over a long period of time – Donald, Pollock, Steyn, Rabada, Philander – that if you hit the top of off stump with good bounce and pace that you will have success here.

“I think it’s a really encouraging place to come and bowl and our bowling attack should be excited about being here.

“You can score runs if you bat well but if you put pressure on as a bowling group for long periods of time you get great reward.”

Watch the first Test between South Africa and England, at SuperSport Park in Centurion, live from 7am on Boxing Day on Daily Week Sports Cricket and Daily Week Sports Main Event.

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