Joe Root: Write off Jimmy Anderson at your own peril

"You question Jimmy's ability at your peril. The reason why he has got so many wickets over such a long period is that he's a consistent performer," said Root.

England cricketers Joe Root (L) and Jimmy Anderson celebrate a wicket (File Photo).   -  Twitter

England captain Joe Root is confident that Jimmy Anderson, who is struggling for form, will come through during his side's second Test against Pakistan at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton on Thursday.

"You question Jimmy's record and his ability at your peril," said Root. "The reason why he has got so many wickets over such a long period is that he's a consistent performer. He is still as dedicated as ever, working very hard at his game and looking very good in practice. He is likely to play this game and I don't think it will be long before he has another five-for next to his name."

Anderson, who has averaged 41.16 in his three Tests this summer, had recently dismissed all suggestions of retirement. And Root insisted on looking beyond wickets and averages when it came to the 38-year-old.

READ | Vaughan: England will sweep Pakistan series despite Stokes absence

"I think it's easy to look at the statistics and not have a broad view on how things are going for you," said Root. "There have been occasions this summer where he [Anderson] has created pressure and wickets have come at the other end.

"It just shows that the greats of the game and the greats of English cricket still have those days when it doesn't come naturally to you. I don't think we need to say too much [to Andeson] other than just being honest where you are at and how you have been bowling."

Meanwhile, Ben Stokes will miss the rest of the Test series after withdrawing from the squad for family reasons. While Stokes' absence will be a big blow, Root thinks it is a good opportunity to test England's bench strength.

"For a long period, he has been arguably our best player. He offers so much in all departments and is a big leader within the group as vice-captain. We will miss him dearly but it is a chance for someone else to try to fill in those boots and help us go 2-0 up in the series." 

Second England vs Pakistan Test will be aired LIVE only on SONY SIX channels from August 13, 2020, 3.30 pm onwards.

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