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Broad overtakes 'Beefy' to send Ashes warning

20 August 2017

Dave Middleton


Dave Middleton


Current new-ball duo now hold top two spots on the list of England's all-time wicket-takers

England bowler Stuart Broad says the team is "going in a really nice direction" with one eye on the Ashes after humiliating the West Indies at Edgbaston.

Broad pocketed five wickets on the third day, spread across two innings, as the West Indies lost 19 wickets in the day to capitulate to defeat by an innings and 209 runs. 

It took the Nottinghamshire seamer up to second on England's all-time wicket-taking tally, with only new-ball partner James Anderson ahead of him.

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Broad now has 384 Test scalps at 28.47 from 107 Tests. That's one more wicket than Broad's childhood hero, Ian Botham who had 383 wickets at 28.40 in 102 Tests between 1977 and 1992. 

"It's a very special day for me personally, to go past Sir Ian Botham. He was a hero of mine growing up, someone I've got a huge amount of respect for," Broad told after play.

"It's wonderful to be in that sort of company but, most importantly, this was a hugely comprehensive victory."

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Botham, who played Test cricket alongside Broad's father, Chris, was watching on from the commentary box as his record was overtaken with a burst of three wickets in 11 balls.

The former allrounder, hero of the 1981 Ashes series, met the current bowler on the ground after play to congratulate him in person.

"He was very proud actually," said Broad. "He gave me my Test cap in 2007, and he's always been there for advice and is great to talk to about cricket. 

"This team has got to know him a lot better and you can tell how passionate he is for us to do well.

"He's been a huge influence on my career, his performances against Australia have always been an inspiration to me.

"It's very special to have gone past him in the wicket tally today."

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The 31-year-old said he benefited from the pink ball in a warning to Australia's batsmen ahead of the first day-night Ashes Test in Adelaide this summer.

"I thought the pitch had lost a little bit of pace so I wanted to bring the stumps into play a little bit more and conditions suited," Broad said. 

"The lights came on, it went slightly darker and the ball just moved slightly. 

"I felt in a really good rhythm, my knees were pumping, I felt like I was bringing both sides of the bat into play. 

"It was nice to pick up three wickets, I felt like I could have got more. 

"As a team we're going in a really nice direction, scoring some good runs, taking some great chances, and putting pressure on with the ball."

Broad's feat means the current England XI now boast the country's two all-time leading wicket-takers in Anderson (who is eight short of becoming the first England bowler to reach 500) and Broad as well as the country's all-time leading run-scorer in Alastair Cook.

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"We've got to be careful we don't take that for granted," said captain Joe Root. "I'm extremely privileged to play in the same team as them.

"I think today is just a great recognition of all the work he (Broad) has done in an England jersey and that mentality that he has – to want to take his game forward even though he has accomplished so much – is so valuable to this team."

However, the imminent departure of England bowling coach Ottis Gibson will be a blow to Root's hopes of winning the Ashes on Australian soil for the first time since 2010-11. 

Gibson has reportedly agreed terms with Cricket South Africa to take over Russell Domingo and his appointment will be confirmed after the Windies series. Broad hailed his influence on England's rise.

"Ottis has been a huge influence on me," Broad said, having raised the ball in his direction after overtaking Botham's record.

"I opened the bowling with him at Leicestershire and he knows my action better than I do. He has been a huge help to me along the way and that was for him."

2017-18 International Fixtures:

Magellan Ashes Series

First Test Gabba, November 23-27. Buy tickets

Second Test Adelaide Oval, December 2-6 (Day-Night). Buy tickets

Third Test WACA Ground, December 14-18. Buy tickets

Fourth Test MCG, December 26-30. Buy tickets

Fifth Test SCG, January 4-8 (Pink Test). Buy tickets

ODI Series v England

First ODI MCG, January 14. Buy tickets

Second ODI Gabba, January 19. Buy tickets

Third ODI SCG, January 21. Buy tickets

Fourth ODI Adelaide Oval, January 26. Buy tickets

Fifth ODI Perth TBC, January 28. Join the ACF

Prime Minister's XI

PM's XI v England Manuka Oval, February 2. Buy tickets

T20 trans-Tasman Tri-Series

First T20I Australia v NZ, SCG, February 3. Buy tickets

Second T20I – Australia v England, Blundstone Arena, February 7. Buy tickets

Third T20I – Australia v England, MCG, February 10. Buy tickets

Fourth T20I – NZ v England, Wellington, February 13

Fifth T20I – NZ v Australia, Eden Park, February 16

Sixth T20I – NZ v England, Seddon Park, February 18

Final – TBC, Eden Park, February 21

About the Writer


Dave Middleton is's senior news editor. From Queensland, he spent 10 years in the UK where he wrote for The Times, The Sunday Times, the Guardian and The Telegraph.