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James Anderson delighted as England take first day honours at Eden Gardens

Anderson shines for England

James Anderson: Swing the key on day one

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James Anderson admitted England were delighted with their first day's efforts in the third Test with India in Kolkata.

India won the toss for the third straight Test but England restricted the hosts to 273-7 at Eden Gardens, Anderson the pick of the bowlers with 3-68.

There was helpful reverse swing for Anderson, with the new ball and old ball, and the Lancashire fast bowler felt it was a fair battle between bat and ball.

"I felt like it was a pretty good pitch to bowl on. If you bent your back you got a bit out of it. It reverse-swung for us as well. But the batsmen who got in on it have played pretty well," he told Sky Sports.

"We knew it would reverse swing out here, it usually does and we're really pleased we managed to get some wickets with it.

"Taking seven wickets and keeping them to less than three an over is a pretty good effort from us (particularly after) losing the toss again, and we expected a pretty good batting pitch."

Anderson revealed watching India's Zaheer Khan hide the ball in his run up and his delivery - so the batsman cannot see which side is shiny - had persuaded him he had to learn the skill.

"Zaheer did it a lot, and that's when I started practising it," he said. "It's proved to be a good skill - because when batsmen are good enough to see which is the shiny side and know which way it's going, it's a lot easier for them.


"So when you hide it, obviously it makes it more difficult. Once we got it reversing, it makes my job a lot easier to try to attack and get wickets out here, so I just enjoyed it as much as I could.

"We've had hints of it reversing in the last two games, but nothing like it

did today. On the pitches we get out here, reverse is crucial for seam bowlers - because it keeps you in the game. This pitch is perfect for it, very abrasive."

Anderson felt though that it was too early to say whether the pitch would be easier to bat on in the next two days.

Athers' Blog - 3rd Test, Day 1

"We'll wait and see - it's hard to judge a pitch after one day. It is a decent pitch but we will be looking to bowl them out early tomorrow and make some runs in our first innings."

Anderson has now dismissed Sachin Tendulkar eight times in Test - the same number as Muttiah Muralitharan.

"It was a crucial wicket for us, and I was delighted to get him out because it looked like he was set," said Anderson.

"He looked a bit scratchy early on but I was really pleased to get him out when I did.

"He's such a class player that, when he gets in like that, he can go on and get a big hundred."

"It's a nice thing to have, and I'll probably think more about it in years to come when I've retired and tell everyone that has happened."

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Who will win the third Test?

  • England
  • India
  • Draw