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James Anderson still finding ways to improve at 38

:Headline: James Anderson still finding ways to improve at 38: ID:431817: from db_amp
James Anderson's six for 40 was his best performance in Asian conditions.

James Anderson looks no closer to the finish line after posting yet another career high in England's second Test against Sri Lanka, but the paceman has been looking to sprint great Carl Lewis for running tips.

At an age where most pace bowlers are no longer putting themselves through the hard yards of Test cricket, 38-year-old Anderson is still finding ways to get better. On Saturday morning he put the finishing touches to figures of six for 40 on day two, his best ever return in Asian conditions.

That helped England dismiss their hosts for 381, a strong total but one that would have been even steeper without Anderson's excellence, before Joe Root and Jonny Bairstow put on a 93-run stand for England's third wicket in a total of 98 for two.

Anderson's unmatched ability to endure on the big stage – he has played more Tests, bowled more balls and taken more wickets than any other seamer – has been fuelled by a fierce physical determination and even now he is eager to learn and evolve.

"Age is something that I don't really take into account...I don't wake up thinking 'right I'm 38 and however many days'. I'm thinking I'm still someone who can do a job for England and I can still win games of cricket," he said.

"I still love working at my game, still love doing the fitness stuff and keeping in good shape. I feel as though I can still get quicker and that I can improve on my fitness, so I am trying to find ways of doing that. I have done a lot of work in the gym and I have sort of got obsessed with watching sprinters as well.

“I don't see why I can't keep improving just because I'm getting older”
- James Anderson

"I am obsessed with Carl Lewis at the minute, watching him run but I don't know if you can see a comparison with me chasing the ball to the boundary! I don't see why I can't keep improving just because I'm getting older. The more work you put in, generally this game will give you rewards and that's how it felt the last couple of days."

Anderson's superb showing raises questions about whether or not England would be best served playing both him and Stuart Broad in the first Test against India in a fortnight's time – having shared one place in the current series.

"I'd like to think so, but all we can do is try to keep performing and hopefully we get the nod," he said.

"I'm sure the coach and captain have got their thoughts and the selectors will have their thoughts too."

Joe Root maintained his form in the second Test (Mike Hewitt/PA)

England will pick up on 98 for two on day three, Root following up last week's 228 with a free-scoring 67no with Jonny Bairstow offering solid support.

Root's dominant performance settled any sense of drama created by the third successive failure of top two Dom Sibley and Zak Crawley and he looks in good enough form for another big innings.

"I feel like he's a real calming influence on the team at the moment, both in the dressing room as captain and out in the middle," said Anderson.

"To have someone like him in a team, who's obviously in good form at the moment is great. And hopefully the other guys will follow his example, stick with him and try and build some big partnerships."

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last updated article - 2021-01-23 14:15:34:
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Premier League Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City34255471244780
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd331910464352967
3Leicester CityLeicester351961063432063
4Chelsea341710753312261
5West Ham UnitedWest Ham341771055441158
6Tottenham HotspurSpurs341681060382256
7Liverpool33159955391654
8Everton33157114542352
9Arsenal34147134637949
10Aston Villa331461348381048
11Leeds UnitedLeeds34145155052-247
12Wolverhampton WanderersWolves34119143346-1342
13Newcastle UnitedNewcastle35109164058-1839
14Crystal Palace33108153456-2238
15Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton34813133539-437
16Southampton33107164159-1837
17Burnley3499163147-1636
18Fulham34512172545-2027
19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom34511183165-3426
RSheffield UnitedSheff Utd3452271860-4217
Scroll for more - Tap for full version
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