Johannesburg: England pacer James Anderson has revealed that he found South Africa‘s veteran batsman Hashim Amla and former Australian skipper Ricky Ponting the most difficult batsmen he bowled to. Anderson made his revelation while appearing with former Australian leg-spinner Shane Warne in the Sky Sports studio to discuss the Indian Premier League (IPL). While Warne chose Brian Lara and Sachin Tendulkar besides Jacques Kallis, Kevin Pietersen, Graham Gooch and Ponting in the list of batsmen he had trouble bowling to in his Test career, Anderson opted to pick Ponting and Amla.
“I’d put Ricky Ponting right up there, especially in Australian conditions,” Sport24 quoted Anderson as saying. The 34-year-old said that Ponting used to make it very difficult for him to settle as a bowler because of his ability to hit from any length. “Now, Hashim Amla is right up there (too) – he’s very difficult to bowl at, especially in Test cricket.” The right-arm pacer will face Amla in July, as England host South Africa in a four-Test series. Anderson, a 122-Test veteran, is England’s all-time leading Test wicket-taker. He has taken 467 wickets at an average of 28.50. Meanwhile, Anderson understands the challenges his side is going to face in Australia, especially against Steven Smith, who is currently in a red-hot form.
The world No. 1 batsman finished Australia’s last Test assignment in India with 499 runs in 4 Tests with 3 centuries and consolidated his position as the top-ranked batsman in the longest format. Smith’s role in the series was phenomenal even though Australia went down 1-2 against India.