Ind vs Eng: Andy Roberts, Michael Holding hail James Anderson as best on English soil

Sep 13, 2018, 10:30 IST | Clayton Murzello

Andy Roberts pointed out that James Anderson has claimed more than 100 of his 564 Test wickets at Lord's alone and was not a huge force while playing in overseas Tests

Ind vs Eng: Andy Roberts, Michael Holding hail James Anderson as best on English soil
Andy Roberts

England's James Anderson may have become the world's leading Test wicket-taker among fast bowlers at the Oval on Tuesday when he went passed Australian Glenn McGrath's 563 scalps. But ask Andy Roberts whether the Lancastrian is the best pace bowler in his book and he'll not answer in the affirmative. "He's probably the best fast bowler in English conditions," said Roberts who was the first West Indian pacer to reach 200 wickets. He did so in his 46th Test — against India at the Eden Gardens, Kolkata — in 1983.

Roberts pointed out that Anderson has claimed more than 100 of his 564 Test wickets at Lord's alone and was not a huge force while playing in overseas Tests. "It would have been great had he converted those good performances abroad," said Roberts from Antigua. For the record, Anderson made four trips to Australia and claimed 60 wickets with only a solitary five-wicket haul (at Adelaide on the 2017-18 tour) to his record.

Roberts's former pace partner Michael Holding would not get into talk about whether Anderson is the greatest England fast bowler. "I don't talk about people I have never seen so I don't talk about all-time best. Numbers alone don't tell the whole story so I prefer to stick to those I've seen. "Jimmy Anderson is certainly the best English bowler I have seen in England as when the ball is swinging he is dynamic. Outside of England and as we saw on the last day of the last Test, when the conditions do not suit, he struggles a bit," said Holding.

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