James Anderson breaks silence on England omission for Sri Lanka tour

James Anderson admits it was ‘very frustrating’ to be left out of England’s squad for the tour to Sri Lanka.

England travel to Sri Lanka next month for a two-match Test series but will be without their record wicket-taker, who missed the last two matches of the series in South Africa with a rib injury.

Anderson, 37, declared himself fit for the trip to Sri Lanka but was overlooked, with England keen for the veteran to fully recover in time for the home summer.

‘It was very frustrating but it happens, there’s not a lot I can do about it,’ said Anderson, who has taken 584 wickets in 151 Tests.

‘I’m just focusing on the summer and starting the season with Lancashire, because all I can do is focus on when I can play cricket next and that’s with Lancashire and hopefully I can.

‘I’m not injured. I have been bowling for two weeks now. I’ve not had that many county pre-seasons, because I’ve been touring with England most of the time.

‘I am just excited to get outside, I have been inside for most of this winter.’

Anderson has also backed his Lancashire team-mate Keaton Jennings to justify his recall to England’s Test squad.

Opening batsman Jennings has not featured for England since the start of 2019 but scored both of his Test centuries in the subcontinent.

‘He had a good season with Lancashire and he has performed with the Lions,’ Anderson said.

‘I think he is definitely going to have learnt from previous times he has been with England and I think that success he has had in the subcontinent will help him for this tour to Sri Lanka.

‘All he can do is perform as well as he can but I imagine he is not going to look much further ahead than these two Test matches.’

Anderson took nine wickets in the first two Tests of the South Africa series before returning home to recover from his rib injury. England won the series 3-1.

England’s two-Test series against Sri Lanka starts in Galle on March 19.

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