The fast bowler admitted the ball can reverse if it gets assistance from the surface, but conceded he doesn’t expect it to play an important role in the third Test.
How the pink ball behaves under lights and throughout the day-night Test has been a hot topic of discussion.
With the pink ball traditionally assisting the seamers, many backed James Anderson to play a starring role in Ahmedabad.
Speaking to ESPNcricinfo after having trialled the pink ball in the nets, James Anderson wasn’t too confident about the ball’s ability to reverse.
“It feels very similar to the Dukes in the hand. I think we will be unlikely to see reverse. It depends on the pitch. If the pitch is abrasive you might see a bit of reverse, but from how we’ve bowled it in the nets I would be very surprised if it does reverse.”
Perfection 😍 pic.twitter.com/q869C9z6kp
— England Cricket (@englandcricket) February 20, 2021
James Anderson is expected to return to the side after being rested for the second Test.
The 38-year-old played a starring role for England in the first Test in Chennai, and his mesmerizing spell of reverse-swing bowling in the 2nd innings left Indian batsmen flummoxed.
Players from both camps are unsure about how the SG pink ball will behave in India. Having played with the Dukes pink ball in England, James Anderson conceded that the SG ball isn’t too different from the Dukes.
“It doesn’t feel a lot different (to other brands of the pink ball). What we have found with all the pink balls, it seems like they have an extra bit of lacquer on them so it feels a bit more plastic, the coating, rather than on the red ball where you can feel the leather. It may well stay a bit harder for longer. We’ll have to wait and see how it reacts after 40-50 0vers.”
Some hard yards for our quicks in Ahmedabad 🥵 pic.twitter.com/71l8ZB76j1
— England Cricket (@englandcricket) February 19, 2021
With a greater experience of playing with the pink ball, anticipation is high that England’s pacers will enjoy bowling with it. But James Anderson reiterated that conditions will matter more than the ball’s colour.
“I don’t think we’ll bowl any differently to how we normally bowl with the red ball. We’ll be assessing conditions as we do and bowl accordingly. If it’s swinging around we’ll be more attacking, bowling a fuller length, have extra catchers in. If not, we’ll go a little bit more defensive.”
James Anderson also revealed that the visitors have been practising with ‘really old’ balls in the build-up to the third Test.
“It’s all about assessing the conditions. We’ve got a couple of balls that are really old. We’ve been practising with that and they are doing absolutely nothing. I think it’s important we do that because you still need the option of taking wickets when it’s not swinging around.”