Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

I Know Jimmy's Hungry Enough to Make the 500 Club, Says Prior

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

I Know Jimmy's Hungry Enough to Make the 500 Club, Says Prior

Article excerpt

Byline: Tom Collomosse at Headingley

JIMMY ANDERSON began today's Second Test one wicket away from becoming the first Englishman to reach the 400 mark -- but former team-mate Matt Prior believes he can make it to 500.

Both Anderson and his captain, Alastair Cook, knew they had excellent chances to make history as England tried to wrap up the Investec Series against New Zealand. After his 162 helped England to victory at Lord's last week, Cook knew he would need to make just 32 in Leeds to surpass the 8,900 gathered by his mentor, Graham Gooch, and become England's all-time leading run-scorer in Tests.

Anderson is already at the top of the tree for England bowlers, after going past Sir Ian Botham's mark of 383 in Antigua last month.

The next milestones should prove a formality for both men, yet wicketkeeper Prior, who played alongside them in England's recent golden era from 2009-13, believes Anderson is still a long way from the finishing line. Only five bowlers have passed 500 Test wickets, yet Prior is confident Anderson can become the sixth. "If he keeps bowling like he is, then why can't he take 500?" Prior told Standard Sport. "As long as he stays free of injury, I know he is keen to play for as long as possible. Everyone knows how good Jimmy is but the team means so much to him and that is just as impressive.

"Remember last summer at Headingley, when he was batting and came within two balls of saving the Test and the series. He was distraught after he got out, in tears, because he felt he had let down his team-mates.

"He showed how much he cared about playing for England and rightly so because those are the kind of emotions you need in a successful team. Everyone should be playing for his team-mate as much as for himself.

"The sign of a good team is when it's far more important not to let your team down than it is to avoid letting down a coach or a director of cricket. …

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