James Anderson has become the first England bowler since Ian Botham in 1980 to break through the 900-point mark in the world rankings, following his match figures of 9 for 43 against India at Lord’s.
Meanwhile, Virat Kohli has conceded the top batting ranking a week after his outstanding performance at Edgbaston lifted him above Steven Smith.
During the course of the second Test, Anderson passed 100 wickets at Lord’s – the first pace bowler to take a century at a single Test venue – became the leading wicket-taker in England-India contests, and saw his average dip below 27 for the first time since his fifth Test in 2003.
With 903 rating points, Anderson becomes the seventh England bowler to reach the 900-point mark after Sydney Barnes (932), George Lohmann (931), Tony Lock (912), Botham (911), Derek Underwood (907) and Alec Bedser (903).
Anderson became the first England bowler to reach 500 Test wickets last year against West Indies and is now closing in on Glenn McGrath’s haul (563) to become the most prolific pace bowler of all time.
Against India at Lord’s, his success started early when he removed M Vijay in the first over of the Test and proceeded to take 5 for 20 in the first innings. He then claimed Vijay for a pair in India’s second innings, although he couldn’t quite manage his first 10-wicket haul at Lord’s.
“He’s a special, special commodity, isn’t he?” England captain Joe Root said. “He’s something that doesn’t come along very often and we’ve got to enjoy him while he’s around. There’s been chat about his longevity but, at the minute, he’s bowling better than he ever has before. Even though the conditions suited him, you’ve still got to put the ball in the right area and ask the right questions of the batters.”
One wicket that has eluded Anderson so far in the series has been Kohli although the pair have enjoyed an absorbing contest. At Lord’s, Kohli fell to Chris Woakes and Stuart Broad and his return of 40 runs in the two innings has seen him slip back below the suspended Smith in the batting chart.