Win or lose, England restore pride after Second Test fightback
England bowler James Anderson spoke of the pride among the tourists after they fought back to set up a thrilling final day of the Adelaide Ashes Test.
Having capitulated to 227 all out in reply to 442-8 declared, England’s hopes of victory were almost non-existent, with their control of the urn also loosening.
However, Anderson led a brilliant fightback with the ball, taking a first five-wicket haul in Australia as Steve Smith’s men were skittled for 138 across Monday’s night-time session and Tuesday afternoon.
England were no less spirited with the bat, captain Joe Root unbeaten on 67 at the end of day four as his side closed on 176-4, requiring a further 178 for an unlikely victory.
“Three down would have been amazing, losing Dawid [Malan for 28] at the end there was tough,” Anderson told BT Sport. “But we’d take this position from the first innings, bowling poorly first innings, batting poorly, we’d absolutely take this position.
“There’s never been that doubt in our dressing room. We know we can fight and we’ve got a lot of determination in the dressing room.
“The first two innings of this game, we were really frustrated and there was anger in the dressing room because we didn’t do ourselves justice.
“We’ve come out firstly with the ball and today with the bat and we’ve done ourselves proud so far and hopefully we can do a better job tomorrow [Wednesday].”
This is Anderson’s 15th Test in Australia and he has ran the full gamut of emotions, suffering a pair of 5-0 whitewashes as well as taking more wickets than anyone as England secured a memorable triumph in the 2010-11 series.
Having had to wait so long for a five-for, the Lancastrian veteran was understandably satisfied.
“It’s nice to get a five-for, especially in conditions here I’m probably not best suited to,” Anderson said.
“[I’m] delighted obviously, the pink ball helps. It’s not necessarily a monkey off the back but getting five wickets somewhere that’s a little bit not suited to me is really special.”