James Anderson has what it takes to break my Test wicket tally, says Wasim Akram

Image courtesy of: The Mirror

Akram sees no reason as to why Anderson cannot take 450 Test wickets

Former Pakistan left-arm seamer Wasim Akram has announced that England pace bowler James Anderson has what it takes to break his Test wicket tally of 414 wickets.

Anderson has currently taken 324 Test wickets and is only two wickets away from surpassing Bob Willis to become the country’s second-highest wicket-taker in the five-day format.

Anderson would then have to target Sir Ian Botham’s record of 383 Test wickets before he becomes the most successful English Test bowler in history.

“Jimmy’s only 31, so if he doesn’t get injured he should be looking at 450, I reckon,” Akram said. “He’s going to play a lot of cricket in England every summer so that’s a plus for him – I hope he will take more than my 414.

“And the fact that Jimmy is a Lancashire bowler, well, that is just the icing on the cake as far as I am concerned!”

Akram has time and time again praised Anderson for becoming a master of the art of reverse swing and conventional swing as well.

The ex-Pakistan bowler has never worked alongside or even advised Anderson about his bowling, but he feels as if his former team-mate, Mushtaq Ahmed, who is currently serving as England’s spin consultant, will be a sufficient tutor, given his knowledge about reverse and conventional swing.

“Mushy is there, so he will have helped him a lot – but I haven’t spoken to him at any time,” Akram said. “When I see him, he actually reminds me a bit of Waqar Younis. Waqar was more attacking but Jimmy has got more patience, so that’s why he gets a lot more wickets when the ball is old.

“Jimmy was always a very good bowler with the new ball in England but now he has been getting wickets overseas with reverse swing.”

Akram also admitted to not being shocked by the fact that England won the first two Ashes Tests at Trent Bridge and Lord’s.

“I was not surprised at all to see England go 2-0 up,” he added. “With the way England played in India and the way Australia played there after that, I knew Australia’s batting would struggle in England.”

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