Fast bowler veteran James Anderson has called on critics of the much-discussed rotation policy to look at the “bigger picture”, given the huge amount of cricket that will be played by the England team in the coming days.
England did not play Johnny Beirstov and Mark Wood in the first two tests, but returned them for the last two tests as part of the rotation policy, while being the first choice Joss Butler returns home after the initial test to help players cope with life in the bio-bubble.
“You have to try and look at the bigger picture. The idea was that if I missed it, it would give me the best chance of being fit and shooting for the pink ball test,” Anderson was quoted as saying by The Guardian.
Former players, especially Kevin Petersen, have criticized the ECB’s thought process, saying they have to play their best players in a big series like the one against India.
Anderson, 38, played the opening of the series, where he took five gates in England’s victory, but had rested for the second when India came out triumphant with a huge difference of 317 draws.
“I feel good, fresh and ready to go again if called upon. It’s disappointing to some extent, but I see the bigger picture with the amount of cricket we have.”
As an additional argument, Anderson cites injuries he has suffered in the last two years when he missed matches in the 2019 Ashes series, and also could not play two tests against South Africa.
“It’s the same for all bowlers, not just me.” This year we have 17 test matches and the best way to get your best players to shoot for as many of them as possible is to rest from time to time.
“It’s not a case of shielding, it’s just an attempt to make sure you don’t wear someone out until they’re completely broken in half.”
England called Pacer Wood, but Anderson would definitely not mind bowling in tandem with Stuart Broad.
“This has definitely crossed my mind. Ideally, we would end up in a situation where there are moments – a potentially important game – when they both want the experience and that can be called for.
“All we can do is, when we get a nod, do the best for the team, try to stay in the best possible shape, stay in the best possible shape and possibly in the summer or in at the end of the year, we hope to get the chance to play together again, “he said.