ENGLAND fast bowler James Anderson has insisted his sledging days are behind him ahead of the first Ashes showdown against Australia.

Australia paceman Mitchell Johnson had gone on record accusing Anderson of being "one of the biggest ones in the England team" when it came to serving up volleys of abuse.

But ahead of Wednesday's series opener in Cardiff, Anderson responded: "The pre-Ashes phoney war has been in full swing for a while now - and I've already been called a hypocrite.

"It's all because I said that verbal confrontations are not something I need as much these days. I've come to realise I don't need to chirp away.

"It was something I used effectively for a few years and it helped my game. But I'm at a stage in my career where I'm not keen to engage opponents in wars of words as much as I did."

Anderson's claims of a new-found approach were greeted with scorn by Johnson and Australia wicketkeeper Brad Haddin.

"The response from Haddin and Johnson was that I should look in the mirror because I've started plenty of confrontations," Anderson added.

"Well I'm not saying I didn't. What I am saying is that it's not something I rely on any more. We (England) are not going to seek out trouble, go looking for fights or start sledging."

Anderson met the Prince of Wales at training on Monday morning and said the side were receiving royal backing.

"He was very much lending his support, encouragement and it was lovely to see him," the bowler revealed.

"He asked me about the game and preparation, wishing us good luck."

Anderson sat out England's thrilling one-day series with New Zealand and added: "It's been nice to have time away from cricket and get my fitness in a good place. It's been nice meeting with the guys. We had a good practice and have two days to get overs in at the nets."