File picture of James Anderson.© AFP
England have decided to rest senior pacer James Anderson for the first Ashes Test beginning on Wednesday as part of their workload management. By not playing the series opener, the team management feels Anderson can be better prepared for the subsequent pink-ball Test in Adelaide. “Jimmy is fit to play, and is not carrying an injury. With five Tests in six weeks the plan was to get him ready for the second Test in Adelaide,” the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) said in a statement.
The decision also took into account England’s “limited” preparations ahead of the first Test with the weather playing spoilsport.
“With the limited build-up we have had so far on the tour, both him and the management didn’t want to take the risk of him playing after what had happened in 2019 at Edgbaston, when he broke down on the first morning,” the statement read.
“He bowled at full capacity yesterday for just short of an hour and was in a good place physically. He will do the same again today at practice. He will stay with the Test group this week and work with the coaches at the Gabba rather than playing for the Lions.”
Anderson has to play a key role if England are to win the Ashes Down Under for the first time since 2010-11. He had taken 24 wickets at 26.04 when Andrew Strauss led England won the Ashes in Australia more than a decade ago.
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