Anderson ready to answer vice-captain call

Joe Root will have a willing vice-captain if he decides to replace the absent Ben Stokes with James Anderson for the fast-approaching Ashes series.

Monday, 6th November 2017, 7:31 am
Updated Tuesday, 12th December 2017, 1:11 pm
Anderson - ready to answer the call

Root indicated last week that an announcement is imminent on who will fill in as his deputy for Stokes, still at home waiting to hear if he will be charged with causing actual bodily harm after a late-night fracas in Bristol and increasingly unlikely to join England on tour.

Lancashire fast bowler Anderson is one of several plausible candidates, including Root's predecessor as captain Alastair Cook and Stuart Broad - who previously led England's Twenty20 team.

England's evergreen, record-breaking seamer has not spent the first week of England's tour stressing about whether Root will ask him to step up.

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But asked if he would rule himself out, he said: "Of course not, I wouldn't."

At 35, with 506 Test wickets to his name, Anderson is one of the go-to advisers for tactics on the pitch - and it is a responsibility he relishes.

"In the last couple of years, I've seen my role in the team as a leader," he added.

"With young bowlers coming into the team, I've tried to help out as much as I can... I think it's important Joe has people he can rely upon."

As for becoming official vice-captain, however, he name-checks Cook and Broad too.

"It's not something I've thought about.

"My responsibility as a senior player is to bring experience to the group.

"Myself, Alastair and Stuart Broad all (do that).

"There are a lot of players on this tour who have not played in an Ashes series before, and not toured Australia before. So our job is to try and help as much as we can.

"That's part and parcel of our job as senior players, having played over 100 Tests. It's kind of your responsibility to be a leader."