'Easier to accept when you succumb to a champion': Chappell credits Anderson for engineering India's collapse in Leeds
- Former Australia cricketer Ian Chappell credited England's pace bowler James Anderson for engineering India's collapse in the third Test at Headingley.
630 wickets in 165 Tests in 19 years as a fast bowler. These are the numbers of one of the greatest pacers of not just England but world cricket; James Anderson. And if a batsman or a team is undone by the brilliance of Anderson, they can find solace in the fact that it happened against the very best. Former Australia cricketer Ian Chappell has made the exact same point following India's heavy defeat against England at Headingley.
Anderson was the wrecker-in-chief. With his astonishing spell of 3/6 in 8 overs in the first session of the first day, he'd virtually won his team the Test. As it would later turn out, India were bundled out for 78 in the first innings and for 278 in the second as they went down by an innings and 76 runs. The right-arm pacer picked one wicket, a crucial one though of Ajinkya Rahane, in the second innings.
Anderson may not have won the 'Man of the Match' award or picked up the most number of wickets in the Test, both of which belonged to Ollie Robinson, but he "engineered" India's collapse, according to Chappell.
"The collapse at Headingley was engineered by a master of his craft. James Anderson is the best at his art; his ability to control swing in both directions and disguise his intentions is masterly. The remorseless way he sets up batters with the skill of a seasoned copper makes him an unstoppable force on his day.
"Anderson's longevity, and the fact that he achieves consistent movement without periodically losing one or other of his main deliveries, means he's unique as a swing bowler.
"Anderson has done it successfully for 166 Tests, with no end in sight to his swing-bowling supremacy. India's top order may have been humiliated by a 39-year-old taunter, but it's easier to accept when you succumb to a champion," wrote Chappell in his ESPNCricinfo column.
After levelling the five-match series 1-1, England will next host India at the Kennington Oval for the fourth Test, which begins on Thursday, September 2.