England confirm James Anderson as vice-captain for Ashes series in Australia

England's leading wicket-taker fills the vacancy left by Ben Stokes' unavailability

ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA - NOVEMBER 07:  James Anderson of England fields during an England Ashes series nets session at Adelaide Oval on November 7, 2017 in Adelaide, Australia.  (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)
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James Anderson will serve as Joe Root's vice-captain on their Ashes tour, the England camp have confirmed.

Anderson fills the vacancy left by Ben Stokes' current unavailability, as the all-rounder waits at home to discover whether he will be charged after being arrested in September on suspicion of causing actual bodily harm.

England's all-time leading wicket-taker was one of a clutch of obvious candidates, also including his fellow seamer Stuart Broad and former captain Alastair Cook.

Anderson spoke earlier this week about the possibility of becoming vice-captain, confirming he would not rule himself out if asked but adding too that he does not see the role as a critical one - with so many experienced players on hand to help Root.

Asked on Monday if he would say no to the vice-captaincy, Anderson said: "Of course not, I wouldn't."



At 35, with 506 Test wickets to his name, he has evolved into one of the captain's go-to tactical advisers on the pitch - and it is a responsibility he relishes.

"In the last couple of years, I've seen my role in the team as a leader,'' he added.

''With young bowlers coming into the team, I've tried to help out as much as I can... I think it's important Joe has people he can rely upon."