World Cup 2019: Jofra Archer ready to hit home run

Updated: Jun 21, 2019, 02:03 IST | mid-day online desk

England skipper Morgan backs Jofra to handle pressure of playing against WI, his region of birth

World Cup 2019: Jofra Archer ready to hit home run
England captain Eoin Morgan (left) chats with all-rounder Jofra Archer at The Oval in London recently. Pic/Getty Images

Southampton: England captain Eoin Morgan knows better than most the emotions Jofra Archer will experience when the fast bowler plays against his native West Indies for the first time. Dublin-born batsman Morgan, who switched allegiance from Ireland to England a decade ago, is set to lead the tournament hosts against the Caribbean side in a World Cup group match in Southampton on Friday.

Barring a late injury, Morgan's team will include Barbados-born quick Archer, who only qualified for England earlier this year but whose ability to bowl at speeds of up to 95 mph now makes him a central figure as they chase a first 50-over World Cup title. Archer, whose father is English, could have been playing for the West Indies had he not been overlooked for the Under-19 World Cup four years ago.

That fateful decision was to spark a chain of events that saw Archer joining Sussex and then begin the process of qualifying to play international cricket for England. Now he will be be up against plenty of familiar faces in fellow Bajans such as West Indies captain Jason Holder and Shai Hope, as well as former youth team-mates Nicholas Pooran and Shimron Hetmyer. Morgan, recalling his own first experience of playing against Ireland for England, said Thursday: "I think it is a moment where you reaffirm your decision. The difference is the feel.

"When you play against guys that you've played with at age-group level, it feels like a club game against your mates you've known for a long time, compared to playing against strangers. That's the different feel. "Being in that position myself it does feel different. He won't know how it feels until he plays the game. If I feel the need (to speak to him) I will, but I haven't yet."- 'Handle it' - Meanwhile, Morgan backed the 24-year-old Archer, who has taken nine wickets in six one-day internationals at a healthy average of 27, to cope with the inevitable scrutiny that will come his way on Friday.

"I'm sure he will handle it like he's handled everything else in the tournament so far," said his skipper. "Every challenge he has come up against so far he has come out the other side really well. So let's just see how it goes, we are not expecting anything majorly different. "Jofra is extremely interesting because everything he has been confronted with, particularly out on the field, he has overcome. "He's still learning, he's a very young, he has a lot of talent, and that is great for us. It's great that he's in an England shirt now."

Jofra Archer has an English father, and British passport, but initially was not eligible to play for England until 2022. The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) rules stated that as he did not live in England until after his 18th birthday, he needed to complete a seven-year residency period. Archer played for West Indies Under-19s three times in 2014, but had signalled his intention to make himself available to England once his residency period was complete. However, in November 2018, the ECB announced a change to its rules, reducing the eligibility period from seven years to three to bring it into line with ICC regulations.

With inputs from AFP

Catch up on all the latest T20 news and updates here. Also download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updates

Sign up for all the latest news, top galleries and trending videos from Mid-day.com

Subscribe

Shikhar Dhawan's emotional message on leaving the World Cup 2019

This website uses cookie or similar technologies, to enhance your browsing experience and provide personalised recommendations. By continuing to use our website, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy. OK