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England great Anderson’s Test career under threat after McCullum talks – report

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England cricket great James Anderson’s record-breaking Test career is set to come to an end later this year following talks with head coach Brendon McCullum, the Guardian reported Friday.

England great Anderson’s Test career under threat after McCullum talks – report

According to the newspaper, McCullum recently made a five-day visit to the UK, travelling 11,000 miles from his home in New Zealand to tell Anderson, over a round of golf, that the Test team is looking to the future.

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Anderson, who turns 42 in July, is the most successful pace bowler in Test history with 700 wickets from an England record 197 matches.

Only two spinners, Sri Lanka’s Muttiah Muralitharan and the late Shane Warne are ahead of him on the all-time list of the format’s leading bowlers, with Anderson needing just nine more wickets to overhaul the Australia leg-spinner’s tally of 708 Test wickets.

Anderson, however, managed just 10 wickets in four of England’s five Tests during a 4-1 series loss in India concluded in March.

And he has taken just 15 wickets in his last eight Tests at an expensive average of 50.8 in the last 12 months, with McCullum keen to refresh England’s attack ahead of the 2025/25 Ashes series in Australia.

It was not clear from the Guardian report if Anderson will be granted a farewell Test or if he has played his last red-ball match for England.

England do not play a Test again until July when they begin a three-match series against West Indies. That is followed by another three Tests against Sri Lanka in August and September.

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Anderson, who made his Test debut in 2003, is second only on the all-time list of Test appearances behind batting great Sachin Tendulkar, who played 200 times in the longest format for India.

Swing specialist Anderson also featured in 194 one-day internationals and 19 Twenty20s before his international white-ball career ended in 2015 the same year he overtook Ian Botham’s 383 dismissals to become England’s record Test wicket-taker.

Three and a half years later, Anderson overhauled Australia seamer Glenn McGrath’s tally of 563 wickets to become Test cricket’s most successful fast bowler.

After taking his 700th Test wicket, against India at Dharamasala in March, Anderson said he was in the “best shape” of his career, telling the Tailenders podcast: “I’m not getting any worse.

“I like where my game is at and I still have that enjoyment of turning up every day and trying to get better in the nets.”

But he added: “I’ve got to work hard to prove I’m worth a place in the summer.”

Anderson struggled during the drawn 2023 Ashes in England, taking only five wickets in four matches.

His long-time new-ball partner Stuart Broad, England’s second most successful bowler, retired after the dramatic finale to that Ashes, when Ben Stokes’s side won at The Oval to end the series all square at 2-2.

Following the 4-1 reverse in India a first series loss for England under the leadership duo of Stokes and McCullum, the coach accepted his side’s ultra-aggressive ‘Bazball’ approach required “refinement”.

McCullum was also asked if Anderson could be included in the squad for the Australia tour.

“I don’t know, honestly,” the former New Zealand captain replied.

“Who knows where the end line for him is but for now, just enjoy having Jimmy around and make sure we utilise that experience he’s got.

“He’s a great resource for the other guys within the unit.”

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This article was generated from an automated news agency feed without modifications to text.

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