In the grand scheme of an excellent career, Stuart Broad’s figures of 3 for 32 at Edgbaston might look pretty unremarkable. He has played against much tougher opposition in much higher-profile games and taken 15 five-wicket hauls.
But this spell was, in his own words, “really special.” For it’s not every day you surpass the record of your childhood hero.
For those under 40, it may be hard to understand just how great a cricketer Ian Botham was. Those of a certain age may think of him, first and foremost, as a commentator, a charity walker (and if that was all he had ever done, it would still be a life well-lived) and an increasingly unconvincing frontman in adverts.
But, for a few years in the late 70s and early 80s, he was as good a bowler as England have ever had.
Yes, those are strong words. But he swung the ball sharply both ways. He generated decent pace – as late as 1985 he could…