Roach hails Anderson after England veteran announces retirement

Insight Online News

London, May 14 : West Indies pacer Kemar Roach expressed deep admiration for Anderson following the England pacer’s decision to retire after the first Test against West Indies at Lord’s in July.

James Anderson officially announced his decision to retire from international cricket on May 12, stating the first Test against West Indies on 10 July at Lord’s would be his farewell.

Anderson will call time on an international career that has lasted close to 22 years, having made his England debut in 2002.

The veteran pacer will head into his swansong with a mind-boggling 700 Test wickets, having played 187 matches through a storied career.

He stands third in the list for most Test wickets, and will be hopeful of overtaking the late, great Shane Warne, who claimed 708 Test scalps.

Kemar Roach, who is expected to feature in the West Indies lineup for Anderson’s farewell match, lauded the English stalwart as ‘one of the greatest’ pacers in cricket history, an ICC report said.

“He’s a great fast bowler, probably one of the greatest,” Roach said at the Kia Oval where he is currently representing Surrey at the County Championship.

“It’s sad to see him go, but we all know you can’t play forever. He’s done fantastically for England and he deserves whatever he gets,” he said.

“First Test match against us… hopefully, we ruin it,” Roach said jokingly. “He’s highly respected. He’s always given me great advice as well. He will go down as one of the greatest to ever do it. I wish him all the best after that Test match, and hopefully, he enjoys whatever comes next.”

While Anderson’s retirement adds a layer of emotion to the upcoming series, Roach remains unwavering in his commitment to securing a series victory for the Windies, with their last win on English soil dating back to 1988.

Roach is resolute in his belief in the team’s capability to break this streak, bolstered by a formidable pace battery comprising Shamar Joseph, Alzarri Joseph, Jayden Seales and himself.

“It’s a very highly talented and skilful group,” Roach said. “We’ve not had the best of times over here in England, so it’s more about focusing on us – not what they’re going to do for him (Anderson).

“He’s going to get what he deserves. But it’s all about us working hard to get what we deserve, which is a series win over here in England,” Roach


“With Shamar and Jayden Seales now – Alzarri as well – they have added a lot of X factor to the bowling unit. On any given day, they can have a great spell and be devastating. That is what you want. You just want it as consistently as possible, to have those great days,” he said.

“To have three guys like that in the team, (for) a captain to have that to select, for any given day or any given surface (is great). As a group, we are pretty confident. England is always our biggest series… We want to put up a good fight, put on a good show. We haven’t won a Test series in England for quite a while so it is good to come with some confidence, and hopefully, we can do it this time,” Roach said.

West Indies will play England in a three-match series in July, which will be a part of the ICC World Test Championship.

West Indies are currently placed 6th in the standings with a point percentage of 33.33% and will be hoping to climb the table during the series.

Meanwhile, England finds themselves at the bottom of the standings with a point percentage of 17.50%, having secured only three wins in ten matches.

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