James Anderson becomes first seamer to 600 Test wickets

James Anderson has become the first seamer – and the fourth bowler overall – to claim 600 Test wickets. Anderson, whose Test career began in 2003, reached the milestone with the wicket of Azhar Ali as Pakistan batted on the final afternoon of the third Test of the series at the Ageas Bowl.

Anderson could have been forgiven for wondering if the wicket would ever come. At one stage in this match, he saw four chances – none of them especially taxing, a couple of them really quite straightforward – dropped off his bowling within the space of 37 deliveries.

Rain and bad light has also frustrated him in recent days and, with England not scheduled to play another Test this year, it seemed Anderson could face an agonising wait.

With play held up on the final day by heavy overnight rain and a wet outfield, the game did not restart until 4.15pm. Anderson did not have to wait too much longer, having Azhar taken by Joe Root at lone slip in his third over, to spark celebrations among his team-mates.

Anderson already holds numerous Test records. As well as having played more Tests – this is his 156th – than any other specialist seamer, he has also bowled more deliveries: nearly 34,000. Now aged 38, he has made it clear he has no immediate plans to retire and has previously expressed his desire to return to Australia for one more Ashes series at the end of 2021.

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