Joe Root lauded milestone man James Anderson, saying the pacer is a ‘credit to the country’. Root was talking in the post-match presentation ceremony after Anderson got his 600th Test wicket in the drawn game against Pakistan in Southampton, which ended the three-match series with England winning 1-0.
“Very proud of the way we played throughout. It was a fantastic achievement for Jimmy (Anderson)," said Root. “To be able to stand up and perform in Test cricket over such a long period of time is an incredible effort achievement. We all know how valuable he is to our squad. He’s a wicket taker but as a senior player and leader of bowlers, helping those young guys come through, he’s so much more than what you see on the field and a credit to our country.
“Absolutely see (Stuart) Broad and Anderson continuing for a long time for us."
Root was also full of praise for Zak Crawley, the 22-year-old who won the Man of the Match award for scoring 267.
“Crawley’s work ethic, his game and how smart he is, I am not surprised at all with what he’s done," the England captain said. “To see him do it so early in his career and play with that maturity was magnificent. When you have players playing Test cricket, you want your boys to be performing as well as we have. It has been thoroughly enjoyable for us and I thank the teams (West Indies and Pakistan) for coming over for this."
Crawley, meanwhile, said it still hasn’t ‘sunk in’.
“It’s a great honour and I certainly don’t see myself in that category with the players in the list (of Highest run-scorers for England)," he said. “You are always nervous playing Test cricket, but thankfully when I got in I cashed in and made sure I got a big score.
“I found useful preparation for this series. You obviously want to play as many Tests as possible, but I did my best in the nets and it came off rather well. It is rare to score a hundred in any form of cricket, so when I got to a hundred I just wanted more. I’m sure this will give me a lot of confidence going forward. It hasn’t sunk in yet but hopefully I can build on it."
Jos Buttler, who too made a century, was the Man of the Series. Buttler had also made 75 in the first Test, helping England chase 277 after being 117 for 5.
“Jimmy’s variety and skills get him to stand out. And his longevity as a fast bowler. We were pretty sheepish, but he is a great guy," Buttler said on Anderson. “A great day, and a shame it wasn’t a full house to see him do that."
Buttler came into the series searching for form.
“It is important to remind yourself to keep that confidence when you’re going well," he said. “I think any time I manage to hit on straight past the bowler, it is a good sign for me. Especially when you get one early on in your innings, it helps. It was the best pitch we had all summer and nice to build on it. Those two guys (Rory Burns and Dom Sibley) and then Ollie Pope and Crawley are exciting to watch. They can bat under pressure and it is delightful to watch with them taking pressure off you."