Ashes 2019: ‘He wanted to play because he is chasing 600 wickets’ - Gough blasts Anderson after Edgbaston defeat
Former England cricketer Darren Gough hit out at James Anderson after the ‘Three Lions’ suffered an embarrassing loss at the hands of Australia in the first Ashes at Edgbaston in Birmingham. Australia thrashed England by 251 runs to go 1-0 up in the five-match series. Gough, who picked up 229 Test wickets for England, lashed out at Anderson following the defeat as the pace spearhead could bowl just four overs in the match as he aggravated the injury on the first day itself. Anderson was a big doubt for the series opener as he was recovering from a calf injury. The veteran had not played competitive cricket for a month leading into the match after sustaining the injury while playing for Lancashire.
“I put the blame at Anderson’s door. He wasn’t fit,” Gough told talkSPORT. “He wanted to play against Ireland because he is chasing 600 wickets. That pull is there and he’s not far away.”
“He’s been an absolute great bowler and still is but he is getting older and is coming back from a calf strain. He was rushed back to try and play against Ireland and obviously wasn’t fit so they gave him another week.
“No fitness test in between has him playing. He goes from bowling a few balls in the net to an Ashes Test. The intensity with an Ashes Test means you lift your normal game by five or 10 per cent and it’s gone. That’s one of, if not the biggest reason we have lost this game,” he added.
Things have gone from bad to worse for Anderson as he has been ruled out of the second Test. Scans have now confirmed he has no chance of taking part in next week’s game at Lord’s, with assessment taking place “on an ongoing basis”.
“The MRI confirmed that Anderson has suffered a calf injury,” said a statement from the England and Wales Cricket Board on Tuesday.
“As a result of the injury, he will commence a rehabilitation programme working with the England and Lancashire medical teams.
“Anderson will miss the second Test match, which starts at Lord’s on Wednesday August 14. He will be reassessed on an ongoing basis.”
((With agency inputs))