Remarkable! Anderson becomes number one Test bowler at 40

England´s James Anderson (L) walks from the field with teammate Stuart Broad (R) and other team members after their win during day four of the first cricket Test match between New Zealand and England at Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui on February 19, 2023.— AFP

English pacer James Anderson Wednesday surpassed Australian pacer Pat Cummins, at the age of 40, to become the number-one ranked bowler in the latest ICC Men’s Test Rankings.

This is the sixth time Anderson has topped the ICC Test bowler rankings on the Test rankings.

Anderson took the top spot on the back of his seven wickets in their convincing 267-run victory over New Zealand last week in Mount Maunganui. The swing master ended the Aussie Test skipper’s four-year reign as the best Test bowler.

The right-arm pacer first reached the summit in May 2016 when he surpassed his bowling partner Stuart Broad and Indian bowler R Ashwin to earn top billing in an illustrious international career that began way back in 2003.

Anderson claimed the top title for five months in 2018 before losing it to South African pacer Kagiso Rabada in November 2018.

Anderson has found a new lease of life under new coach Brendon McCullum as England has won 10 of their previous 11 Test matches.

The veteran played a vital role in the majority of those victories. The England veteran also has the third-highest Test wickets (682) after legendary spinners Shane Warne (708) and Muttiah Muralitharan (800).

Anderson also became the oldest bowler to claim the number one spot since Australian great Clarrie Grimmett did so in 1936, thanks to his ascent to the top at the age of 40 years and 207 days.

However, Indian spinner Ashwin, who has the second position with a total of 864 rating points, only two rating points behind the England bowler, makes Anderson’s lead at the top rather tenuous.

With 858 rating points, Cummins slides to third but can thrust back up the rankings if he delivers for Australia in the ongoing four-match series against India. Though, Cummins’s side has not been up to their best, losing the first two matches. 

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