James Anderson labels Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum as ‘DOGS’ after they tell him to retire

Veteran England bowler James Anderson revealed the reason behind his international retirement after the upcoming Lord’s Test match against the West Indies. James Anderson stated that his decision was confirmed during a meeting with captain Ben Stokes, coach Brendon McCullum, and managing director Robert Key.

The England management has asked James Anderson to retire from Test cricket after the upcoming Test against the West Indies, aiming to build the team for the 2025-26 Ashes series. Anderson has represented England in 187 Tests and took 700 wickets at an average of 26.53, including 32 five-wicket hauls.

James Anderson made his Test debut for England in 2003. The right-handed bowler will conclude his illustrious career at Lord’s during the first Test against the West Indies, starting on July 10. He is the leading wicket-taker for England in Tests and also has the chance to retire as the second-highest wicket-taker overall.

Wouldn’t Say It Was A Surprise – James Anderson

Speaking at a press conference, James Anderson recalled his calm reaction when informed about his retirement from international cricket. Anderson stated that he wasn’t surprised by their perspective and thanked them for explaining their decision to him.

“I wouldn’t say it was a surprise because when the three big dogs invited me to a hotel in Manchester for a chat I didn’t think it was just a normal appraisal. I had a suspicion that that was going to be the case. I think they were surprised at how calm I was and I was probably surprised at my reaction. I wasn’t overly emotional or angry about it. I saw their point of view and appreciated them taking the time to lay it out for me,” said Anderson, as quoted by BBC Sport.

Trying To Focus On To Stop Myself Crying – James Anderson

James Anderson acknowledged that emotions will fluctuate during his final game, aiming to prevent himself from becoming emotional and to remain composed throughout the match. The veteran cricketer emphasized his priority of helping England secure a victory.

“I’m trying not to think too much about the game itself yet, or how I’d feel about it. The big thing for me this week is wanting to play well, bowl well, and get a win. I’m sure the emotions during the week will change, but right now that’s what I’m trying to focus on to stop myself crying,” Anderson added.

James Anderson is on the verge of surpassing Shane Warne’s legendary record, needing just nine more wickets. The 41-year-old pacer is the only fast bowler to pick 700 wickets in Test cricket. He is second only to former Indian skipper Sachin Tendulkar in terms of matches played in the five-day format.

Gus Atkinson and Chris Woakes have been included in the playing XI alongside Anderson. Atkinson has featured in nine ODIs and three T20s in his career. The 26-year-old was also part of the squad during England’s recent Test tour of India. Woakes is set to lead England’s pace attack in the second Test at Trent Bridge.

Also read: Watch: Jasprit Bumrah receives heroic reception in Ahmedabad after returning home as T20 World Cup Champion

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