Anderson takes 500th Test wicket

James Anderson holds up the ball as he celebrates taking his 500th Test match wicket

James Anderson holds up the ball as he celebrates taking his 500th Test match wicket

James Anderson made cricket history when he became the first English bowler to reach 500 Test wickets.

England's all-time leading wicket-taker added the one more he still needed in West Indies' second innings at Lord's, completing the memorable feat of great skill and endurance in the 129th Test of his 14-year career to date when he clean bowled Kraigg Brathwaite.

The 35-year-old therefore joins elite global company, one of just six bowlers in the all-time list with 500 to his name.

When he knocked back Brathwaite's middle-stump early on the second evening of the third Investec Test, Anderson immediately raised his right arm to salute the crowd and then ran to his former captain Alastair Cook in the slips to begin celebrations of another illustrious milestone.

He has joined two seam-bowling greats, Australia's Glenn McGrath and West Indies' Courtney Walsh, in the 500 club - with Sri Lanka spinner Muttiah Muralitharan top of the pile on an astounding 800 wickets and Shane Warne and Anil Kumble also above the pace trio.

There was an extra symmetry to Anderson's feat, because it came on the same ground where he took his first Test wicket on debut - Zimbabwe opener Mark Vermeulen, also bowled, on the way to figures of five for 73 in May 2003.

This time, he was bolstering England's prospects of a series-sealing victory in this deciding match as the West Indies found themselves six for one after conceding a first-innings lead of 71 in a low-scoring contest.

Here, we look at the five other bowlers to have reached the 500 Test wickets milestone:

MUTTIAH MURALITHARAN, Sri Lanka (800 wickets, 133 Tests, 22.72 average)

The Sri Lankan great boasts a tally that will surely never be conquered, and was long considered near impossible. His controversial action will, unfortunately, always encroach into conversations about his ability to generate prodigious, venomous turn with his off-breaks and doosras but having been cleared to bowl by the International Cricket Council, he did so with a merciless appetite. His record of 67 five-wicket hauls and 22 10-wicket matches is a record by an almost comical margin and, arguably, no retirement in history has left such an irreplaceable gap in a national side.

SHANE WARNE, Australia (708 wkts, 145 Tests, 25.41 avg)

With a surfer's hair-cut and a club cricketer's build, Warne busted many stereotypes with his innate genius for the craft of leg-spin. He resuscitated the art after a long spell of dormancy and bamboozled batsmen all over the world with his vast arsenal of deliveries - all hyped, many genuine, some imagined. He made his name by bowling England's Mike Gatting with the 'ball of the century' in 1993 and was still baiting the old enemy 14 years later, signing off in triumph after a 5-0 Ashes whitewash.

ANIL KUMBLE, India (619 wkts, 132 Tests, 29.65 avg)

For many reasons, cricketing and non-cricketing, the cerebral wrist-spinner will be immortalised by his feat of taking all 10 wickets in an innings against India's great rivals Pakistan in 1999. Kumble's brilliance was often sidelined by the exploits of the two names above him on the list but he achieved two things neither Warne not Muralitharan never did - a Test century and being named captain of his country, which he achieved age 37.

GLENN MCGRATH, Australia (563 wkts, 124 matches, 21.64 avg)

It was Australian cricket's great fortune that the careers of Warne and McGrath ran in tandem from 1993 to 2007, and no coincidence that they dominated that era so comprehensively. McGrath stands as the most prolific seam bowler in history and achieved greatness not through stunning pace or vicious lateral movement, though he was able summon enough of both. Instead he was relentless in finding the right line and length on any given surface and probing it exhaustively. Famous for his refusal to offer cheap runs, he has the lowest average among the top 10 wicket-takers.

COURTNEY WALSH, West Indies (519 wkts, 132 Tests, 24.44 avg)

Discussions on the greatest fast bowler to hail from the Caribbean tend to be long and involve a long list of contenders, including illustrious names such as Malcolm Marshall, Andy Roberts, Joel Garner, Colin Croft, Michael Holding, Ian Bishop and Curtly Ambrose. But none of those had Walsh's fortitude and staying power, as he clocked up 132 Test caps in 17 years. No specialist paceman has ever played more. Like McGrath, Walsh was more work-horse than war machine in his devastating partnership with Ambrose but his natural height and bounce never failed to unsettle batsmen.