Archer cleared to rejoin England squad for final Test after 2nd COVID-19 negative report - GulfToday

Archer cleared to rejoin England squad for final Test after 2nd COVID-19 negative report


Jofra Archer. File

Jofra Archer has rejoined the rest of the England squad at Old Trafford after a second test for coronavirus produced a negative result, the England and Wales Cricket Board said on Tuesday.

Archer was omitted from the team that won the second Test against the West Indies by 113 runs at the Manchester venue on Monday to level the three-match series at 1-1.

The fast bowler was left out after the ECB revealed on the first morning of the game that he had breached bio-secure regulations governing international cricket’s first series since the coronavirus lockdown.

He had made an unauthorised trip home after the West Indies’ four-wicket win in the first Test in Southampton.

It emerged that during his trip he had come into contact with an unnamed individual.

Archer had to self-isolate for five days in his room at the England squad’s on-site hotel at Old Trafford.

But following a disciplinary hearing last week, the ECB said Archer would be available for selection for the third Test provided both his virus checks produced negative results.

That being the case, the Barbados-born quick could come back into the England side when the series finale starts at Old Trafford on Friday.

England will be able to select from a set of six pacemen, with Stuart Broad, Chris Woakes and Sam Curran having all played their part in the second Test win at Lancashire’s headquarters.

James Anderson, Mark Wood and Archer did not feature after appearing in the series opener.

The selectors face a tricky decision but England captain Joe Root, looking to regain the Wisden Trophy after a 2-1 series loss in the Caribbean last year, said Archer’s error of judgment would not be held against the 25-year-old Sussex paceman.

“It was disappointing from our side of things but as far as I’m concerned he (Archer) has been through a disciplinary meeting, he’s very aware of the consequences of his actions and very remorseful,” Root said.

“As a side and mates we’ve been there for him. He’s aware he made a massive error but once the disciplinary has gone through it’s time for us to look at him being available.”

Meanwhile, Ben Stokes’ man-of-the-match performance against the West Indies has catapulted him to the top of the International Cricket Council’s Test all-rounder rankings as well as a career-best third in the batting standings.

Stokes was at the heart of England’s series-levelling win against the West Indies at Old Trafford that ended on Monday, scoring 176 and 78 not out as well as taking three wickets.

Those performances were enough to see him leapfrog West Indies captain Jason Holder, who had been at number one for 18 months.

Stokes is the first England cricketer to top the all-rounder charts since Andrew Flintoff in May 2006.

The rankings, unlike traditional averages, also take the quality of opposition into account and Stokes’ tally of 497 ratings points is the highest for any all-rounder since South Africa’s Jacques Kallis was on 517 in April 2008.

Stokes’ contrasting innings -- a composed hundred followed by a rapid unbeaten fifty as England went in search of quick second-innings runs -- propelled the left-handed batsman to joint third in the batting rankings, level with Australia’s Marnus Labuschagne on 827 points.

Only Australia star Steve Smith and India captain Virat Kohli are currently above the 29-year-old Durham star in that list.

Stuart Broad’s six wickets on his England recall at Old Trafford saw him return to the top 10 of the Test bowling rankings.


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