Adelaide - England's all-time leading wicket-taker James
Anderson says getting Steve Smith's wicket cheaply is crucial to the tourists'
chances of squaring the Ashes series in Adelaide this week.
Smith was the difference with his defiant unbeaten 141 in Australia's
10-wicket win over England in the first Brisbane Test.
Anderson, who looms as England's big hope in Saturday's
historic first-ever Ashes day-night Test at Adelaide Oval, is hoping quicker
pitch conditions will help the tourists' cause.
"He was the difference between the two teams. That
first-innings lead would've been huge for us," Anderson told reporters on Thursday.
"So, getting him out here will be crucial.
"Hopefully more pace in the wicket might help us, but
we've just got to be as relentless as we possibly can to someone like
Anderson, who has 508 wickets in 130 Tests, is expected to
be suited by the swing and movement with the pink ball off the Adelaide pitch
in the twilight conditions along with his new-ball partner Stuart Broad.
Anderson said England have their plans to dismiss the
Australian captain, who is the world's top-rated Test batsman, and will
continue to execute them in Adelaide.
"Obviously, the plans to him, I wouldn't say they
didn't work, but we didn't get him out, so they worked to an extent,"
"We dried his runs up and made him work really hard for
his hundred but obviously we want to get him out."
Smith was made to grind out his runs. It took 261 deliveries
for Smith to reach triple figures in Brisbane in what was the slowest of his
21st Test centuries in terms of balls faced.
Smith's Test-defining unbeaten century over eight-and-a-half
hours gave Australia a 26-run first innings lead which helped swing the
momentum firmly towards Australia over the closing days of the Gabba Test.
"The encouraging thing for us is we came up with plans
to all their batsmen before the series started and probably 70 percent of them
worked," Anderson said. "For us that's encouraging, we can build on that.
"But there's still that small matter of someone getting
140 which we need to deal with.
"We know the dangers of David Warner at the top of the
innings as well, so we've got to keep working hard at getting those guys out
because we know how pivotal they are in their line-up."
Anderson said the touring squad had rallied around Jonny
Bairstow, who caused an unwanted distraction when details emerged of late-night
head-butting incident involving Australia's new Test batsman Cameron Bancroft
in Perth at the outset of England's Ashes tour.
The England wicketkeeper said the incident was blown out of
proportion, but a midnight curfew has been put in place for the players for the
rest of the Australian tour.
"If anything it will galvanise us as a group,"
"If we need any more incentive to get back in the
series, it will give us that."
Anderson said he was delighted to hear that Australia would
"go hard at us" in Adelaide.
"It's something I've always enjoyed. When someone is
trying to get under my skin in all walks of life it makes me more
determined," he said.