Anderson, playing in his 156th match, became the first seamer to capture 600 wickets in the game’s longest format, as England settled for a draw against Pakistan after a rain-hit final day of the third Test on Tuesday.
The 38-year-old’s feat left him fourth in the list of leading Test wicket-takers, with only spin bowlers Muttiah Muralitharan (800), Shane Warne (708) and Anil Kumble (619) ahead of him.
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“He’s set the bar a bit like Sachin has,” McGrath, who previously held the record for most wickets by a pace bowler with 563, told the BBC.
“No one is ever going to catch Sachin in Test cricket for the amount of runs he’s scored (15,921) and the matches he’s played (200). Jimmy’s done the same for fast bowling.
“I didn’t have the skill level Jimmy has. When he’s swinging that ball, both ways, in control, there’s no one better.”
Our greatest ever bowler, @jimmy9. 𝓚𝓲𝓷𝓰 👑 https://t.co/P0nweu3wmB
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Former England skipper Michael Vaughan said they were “witnessing true greatness”.
“I’d be lying if I said we thought we had a bowler that would get this many wickets. We thought we had a bowler of great promise and skill.
“I never in my wildest dreams thought 17 years later we’d be talking about him getting to 600.”
Stuart Broad said he had been inspired by Anderson throughout his career.
“He’s a role model to follow for every English cricketer… He’s always searching to be better and better and 600 won’t be the stopping of him.”