Cricket Expert and Columnist @BeefyBotham
Joe Root and Jimmy Anderson's record-breaking performance 'tremendous', says Sir Ian Botham
Last Updated: 12/07/14 8:07pm
Sir Ian Botham hailed Joe Root and James Anderson's record-breaking last-wicket partnership as 'tremendous'.
The pair racked up an incredible 198 on the fourth day of the first Test against India at Trent Bridge, to give England a first-innings lead of 39.
The duo surpassed the previous Test 10th-wicket record of 163, made by Australia's Phil Hughes and Ashton Agar against England at Trent Bridge last year, as the home side were bowled out for 496.
Joe Root trusted Jimmy more and more as the innings went on.
Sir Ian Botham
The crowds in Nottingham were treated to an exceptional batting display from Root, who began the day on 78, and completed his fourth Test hundred off 186 balls. Anderson pushed on from his overnight 23 and survived a drop on 46 to go on to score his first career half-century.
He soon surpassed John Snow's 1966 record for the highest score by an England number 11 (59), and as he reached 81 it seemed Anderson would become the first to score a Test hundred. But the brilliant innings was finally ended when Shikhar Dhawan took a slip catch off Bhuvneshwar Kumar.
- 198 - Highest last wicket partnership
- 81 - Best score by an England number 11
- 3hrs 50min - Longest innings by a number 11 batsman
Botham praised the pair for their 'tremendous' performance but says, despite smashing multiple records, Anderson will be disappointed he couldn’t break one in particular.
"I don't think anyone saw that coming - it was magnificent," said the former England all-rounder.
"The crowd loved it and got right in to it - record, after record, after record...It was tremendous.
"I thought the India performance was pretty awful to be honest. I thought the captain drifted away and it was just a mishmash of all sorts, but they still had to get the runs and they played magnificently.
"Joe Root trusted Jimmy more and more as the innings went on. It was great entertainment.
"The only thing Jimmy will be disappointed with is that he didn't get past Graeme Swann - his personal best is 85 - he'd have given a lot to get past that one, he'd have like 100 of course, but his first target was 86."
Fellow Sky Sports pundit Michael Holding was also full of praise of the fast bowler, adding: "You have to give a lot of credit to Jimmy because we know he hasn't been handling the short ball very well.
"It's a lot easier on this pitch, because there's not a great deal of pace, but he didn't back away. He tried to get behind the ball every time when it was bouncing and tried to play it down. He played well."
Despite the defiant efforts of Root and Anderson and the late wickets of Murali Vijay (52) and Cheteshwar Pujara (55), a draw remains the likely result but, Botham warns, we shouldn't ever assume, adding: "Probability tells you a draw but you just don't know - it's a funny old game as they say."
Watch the final day of the first Test live on Sky Sports 2 from 10am on Sunday.