James Anderson has hailed team-mate Ben Stokes as the very best all-rounder he has ever performed with, after the 29-year-old’s match haul of 254 runs and three wickets helped England degree the three-match Test sequence in Manchester on Monday.
“It is hard to say how good he (Stokes) is because it is difficult to find the words… Joe Root said the other day that ‘we are in the presence of greatness’ and he is spot on,” stated Anderson.
“The fact that he could get into any team as a batsman …and with that his bowling and fielding speak volumes about the kind of player he is. His bowling has been getting better and better and he can get into a lot of team’s bowling attacks as well, so it is amazing to have that talent in our team.. and to be able to watch it first hand is amazing.
“After a week where he has done everything – chasing balls off his own bowling, batting and getting wickets as well – it [the workload] can take its toll. We got to look after him and make sure we can keep getting the best out of him for as long as possible because he is becoming the best all-rounder England has ever had and there is no reason why he can’t go on to be even better.”
Dealing with consideration
The veteran quick bowler additionally threw his weight behind fellow paceman Jofra Archer, who wrote in his Daily Mail column about how tough the final week has been for him. Archer was pressured to overlook the second Test after being discovered responsible of breaching the crew’s COVID-19 protocol, then was handed a advantageous and written warning by the ECB. “It [Dealing with attention] can be difficult for the guys coming into the international set up. You feel like you are under more spotlight. I guess it boils down to finding out ways to deal with all the extra attention.
“I used to be lucky after I got here into the England crew, there was no social media again then, however the way in which folks can get their opinions on the market, it is fairly seen.”
“We have not seen a lot of him (Archer) as a result of he has been in isolation for just a few days. I’m certain he’ll wish to play on this sport as a result of it is such an important sport, the sequence resting on it. He’s stated about his way of thinking and that is one thing that over the following two days he will have to take a seat down with the captain and coach (Chris Silverwood) and determine if he’s in the precise place to play.”
The third Test between England and West Indies might be aired LIVE on Sony Six channels from 24th July 2020, 3.30 pm onwards