Published on: Aug 08, 2023

Former England batter Ian Bell feels that seasoned pace bowler James Anderson’s experience will be needed during their Test tour of India. England will play five Test matches in India starting January next year. According to Bell, the English side will need the services of Anderson since his long-time bowling partner Stuart Broad has retired.

The most successful Test bowling pair in history will no longer be seen in action together as Broad announced his retirement from professional cricket during the final Ashes 2023 Test at The Oval. The right-arm pacer finished his Test career with 604 wickets in 167 matches at an average of 27.68, with 20 five-fors and three 10-wicket match hauls.

Speaking to Betfair, Bell opined that the services of Anderson, who turned 41 during the last Ashes Test against Australia, will be needed as he can aid the upcoming fast bowlers from the country. “One player England don’t need to worry about losing just yet is James Anderson. Just because Stuart has retired doesn't make him more likely to follow suit in my opinion. England will need his experience in India, not to mention that reliability to bowl dry. He will have big job helping this next England seam attack develop,” said Bell.

The former England batter also reckoned that “Bazball” will be effective against India. At the same time, he admitted that England will have to be smart in their approach and need to adapt as well. “As Ben Stokes said in the press conference the other day, he's been asked whether Bazball would work against Pakistan, South Africa, Australia. So, yes, it will be used in India. But it will be an adapted Bazball. That's what was so good about the Ashes. England showed they could learn and adapt as the series went on. In India they will need to be smart,” Bell went on to add.

Anderson had a poor Ashes 2023. He featured in four of the five Tests, but only managed to claim five wickets at a disappointing average of 85.40. The five-match Ashes 2023 series ended in a 2-2 draw. Australia won the first two Tests, while England won the third and the fifth. The fourth Test of the series ended in a draw.

In a stellar Test career, Anderson has featured in 183 matches in which he has claimed 690 wickets at an average of 26.42, with 32 five-fors and three 10-wicket match hauls.

--By A Cricket Correspondent

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