Ashes 2023: Took inspiration from Joe Root and reverse swept my first ball, says James Anderson

By India Today Sports Desk: England pacer James Anderson said he took inspiration from Joe Root and reverse swept on the first ball he faced in the second innings. Australia need 174 runs to win with seven wickets in hand on Day 5 of the first Ashes 2023 Test.

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Speaking to BBC Sport before the start of play on Day 5, Anderson said former captain Joe Root said he would reverse-sweep on the first ball he faced in the second innings and did it, which lightened the mood in the dressing room. Root scored an unbeaten century in the first innings and chipped in with 46 runs in the second innings.

“He did mention it before we went out but we weren't sure he would do it. It gave the dressing room confidence and lightened the mood. It also sent a message to the opposition that we would be on the front foot. That's what we have done for 12 months now and it's great to see,” said Anderson.

Also Read: Joe Root: The catalyst of England's BazBall

He went on to say that he took inspiration from Root and reverse swept in the first ball himself. Anderson reverse-swept Australia spinner Nathan Lyon for a boundary off the first ball he faced in the second innings, and went on to score 12 runs off 14 balls.

“I took inspiration from Joe so I reverse swept my first ball. Even Stuart Broad's been asking me for tips on how reverse sweep! Strange he's chosen a number 11 rather than the guys who have 10,000 Test runs,” Anderson added.

Anderson said England will continue to be aggressive and will take the game to the opposition on the final day as well. England pacer provided two late breakthroughs for his side to leave Australia reeling at 107 for 3 at the end of Day 4.

“It's great to be around this group because it's so much fun. We are trying different things in training and doing it out to he middle in matches. We are trying to be aggressive and take the game to the opposition. Hopefully we can keep doing it today,” said Anderson.

The game is evenly poised on Day 5 with Australia needing 174 runs to win with seven wickets in hand to take a 1-0 lead in the five-match Ashes 2023 series.

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