PRETORIA – James Anderson’s return from injury could not be more timely for England, who are still unsure about the make-up of their bowling attack as they head into the first test against South Africa.
But while Jofra Archer and Stuart Broad are still not sure of playing in the match, which starts on Boxing Day, after being laid low with flu, Anderson will be back on the frontline for what will be his 150th test.
England are expected to field a five-man seam attack, foregoing spin, if all their pacemen are fully fit. However, that situation may need to be reassessed based on the availability of Ben Stokes.
The all-rounder’s father was admitted to hospital in Johannesburg his condition was described as being “critical" on Tuesday in a statement from the England and Wales Cricket Board.
The 37-year-old Anderson will be the ninth cricketer to reach the 150-test milestone – joining the likes of Sachin Tendulkar, Steve Waugh and Jacques Kallis – when he makes his return to the England attack for the first time since limping off with a calf injury at the start of the Ashes in August.