Stuart Broad 600 Test wickets: England star’s remarkable route

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Stuart Broad became the fifth man to take 600 Test wickets with the scalps of Usman Khawaja and Travis Head in the fourth Ashes Test at Old Trafford.

Broad joined long-time England new-ball partner James Anderson in the elite group and here, we examine how he measures up.


Broad’s wickets have come in 166 matches at an average of 27.57, with his Test debut coming back in 2007 against Sri Lanka.

Known for his game-wrecking bursts, Broad has 20 five-wicket hauls and three 10-wicket matches – a best of 11 for 121 against Australia at Chester-le-Street in 2013 and two against the West Indies, at Lord’s in 2012 and Old Trafford in 2020.

He produced a scintillating innings best of eight for 15 at Trent Bridge to help win the 2015 Ashes and has twice taken seven-wicket hauls at Lord’s, in the aforementioned West Indies clash and against New Zealand the following year.

Broad is also the only England bowler with two Test hat-tricks to his name. The first came against India in 2011 as part of figures of six for 46, with the second against Sri Lanka in 2014.

Australia opener David Warner is his favourite opponent with 17 dismissals across seven Ashes series dating back to 2013, including seven in 10 innings in 2019.

He has 11 dismissals each of Warner’s fellow Australians Steve Smith and Michael Clarke and has taken the wickets of New Zealand pair Ross Taylor and Tom Latham and South Africa’s AB de Villiers 10 times each.

Broad’s golden period between 2013 and 2016 also saw him take six for 25 against India at Old Trafford and six for 17 in Johannesburg to bowl South Africa out for 83. Those four years brought him 196 wickets at 25.56, including nine five-fors and four of his best five-innings figures.

He has shown little sign of slowing down with age, though, putting together a similarly impressive stretch dating back to 2019 – the year he turned 33. He has 165 wickets at 23.75 in that time and aside from a down year in 2021, with just 12 wickets in seven Tests, he has averaged 40 dismissals a year and is on course to maintain that with 34 this year.

Among the elite

Anderson and Broad sit third and fifth respectively on the list of leading Test wicket-takers, which is headed by two of the world’s all-time great spin bowlers.

Muttiah Muralitharan’s 800 wickets – 795 for Sri Lanka and five for an ICC World XI – may never be matched, with the late Shane Warne currently the only man within 100 after taking 708 for Australia.

Anderson is closing on 700 with 688, while former India spinner Anil Kumble’s 619 wickets is the next mark in Broad’s sights.

Retired seamers Glenn McGrath and Courtney Walsh are the only other bowlers to take even 500 wickets – McGrath 563 for Australia and Walsh 519 for the West Indies.

Injury deprived Australia’s Nathan Lyon (496) of the chance to add his name to that list during the Ashes, while fellow spinner Ravichandran Ashwin (486) also has it in his sights.

Only Kumble of the current 500 club has a higher average than Broad, the Indian taking his wickets at 29.65. McGrath’s 21.64 edges out Muralitharan (22.72) for the best average.

Broad surprisingly has the fewest five-wicket innings among the septet, though on 12 of those 20 occasions he has gone on to take at least six – including two sevens and that eight-wicket blitz.

Broad ‘addicted’ to Test cricket

Broad admitted his “addiction” to Test cricket has carried him to 600 wickets, a prestigious milestone he savoured even more after reaching it at the end named after Anderson.

The English pair are great friends, long-time opening bowling partners and now the only non-spinners to have got to the landmark.

“Never in my dreams did I think that would be a thing,” Broad said. “It’s got a nice ring to it, getting my 600th wicket from the James Anderson End. There’s something pretty special about that.”

Broad reflected on his insatiable ambition flourishing in the Ben Stokes-Brendon McCullum axis, under whom he has taken 87 wickets in 14 Tests, having previously feared for his international future after being overlooked for the Caribbean tour in March 2022.

“I have definitely got an addiction to Test cricket and the competitive side of it,” Broad said. “Ultimately, Baz and Stokesy have given me a new lease of life in a way.

“It is such a free changing room. There is no fear of failure or judgement, it’s about moving the game forward and that suits me. I owe a lot in the last 14 months to the way Baz and Stokes have brought energy to the group.

“I have been able to match that and move myself forward as a player. I have found it really enjoyable, I would argue it’s been the most enjoyable year of my Test career which is an awesome thing to say at 37 years old.”

The dismissal of Head was also significant for Broad as he moved to 149 Test wickets against Australia, a record for an England bowler, eclipsing the previous benchmark held by Sir Ian Botham.

Broad, a four-time Ashes winner, revealed his outlook was shaped by watching Australia’s dominance of England in the 1990s and early 2000s, ultimately snapped during a seminal series in 2005.

“I grew up completely obsessed watching Ashes cricket and I suppose that’s why some of my heroes are Shane Warne, Glenn McGrath, some of the great Aussie team,” Broad said.

“As a kid, you are influenced by winning sides. It also built up my steeliness to want to be part of England teams that could win the Ashes after going through a whole childhood without us lifting them.

“I probably grew up with a bit more of an Australian mindset rather than a sort of England mindset of the 90s.”

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