England fast bowler James Anderson made his return to Test cricket against New Zealand at Lord’s on Thursday. Anderson was dropped from the tour of West Indies after England’s disastrous Ashes performance in Australia earlier this year.
With England installing a new captain in Ben Stokes who will now team up with a new head coach in Brendon McCullum, England brought back two of their most prolific wicket-taters in Test cricket – Anderson and Stuart Broad – back into the setup for the three-match New Zealand series at home that got underway on Thursday.
The 39-year-old Anderson, as he has done on numerous occasions, opened the attack for England and once he delivered the first ball of the contest, the seasoned campaigner became the oldest player since India’s Lala Amarnath.
Amarnath, India’s first Test centurion and their first captain after independence, was 41 when he opened the attack for India in 1952.
Anderson took 4/66 and combined with debutant pacer Matthew Potts who also took a four-fer in a sparkling first impression, to bowl out New Zealand for 132 in their first innings after the Kane Williamson-led side opted to bat first.
Anderson accounted for Tom Latham, Will Young, Kyle Jamieson and Tim Southee. Potts dismissed Williamson, Daryl Mitchell, Tom Blundell and Ajaz Patel to finish with 4/16.
Stuart Broad and Stokes chipped in with a wicket each.
Anderson was dropped from the England squad when Joe Root was in charge.
However, Anderson, who holds the record for having taken the most wickets in the history of Test cricket by a pacer, insists he still has a good relationship with Root.
“We do talk, we’ve not fallen out or anything, we chatted (during a county championship match). I spoke to him before he announced that he was stepping down. There’s still a huge amount of respect between the two of us so there’s no animosity,” Anderson had said,