Few would blame James Anderson if he was feeling a little weary. With the last delivery of his 17th over in New Zealand’s second innings in Christchurch he had bowled more deliveries in Test cricket than any another pace bowler: 30,020.
The previous record belonged to another fast bowler of great longevity, Courtney Walsh, and now ahead of Anderson are three of the greatest ever spinners: Shane Warne, Anil Kumble and Muttiah Muralitharan.
Anderson became England’s leading Test wicket-taker in 2015 and last year, against West Indies, he took his 500th Test wicket. With 531 to his name at the time of this latest record, he now has Glenn McGrath’s tally of 563 wickets firmly in his sights as the most by a pace bowler in Tests.
Anderson carried England’s attack during the Ashes defeat with 17 wickets at 27.82, and has continued to bowl well in New Zealand.