England pacer Jofra Archer admitted that playing more than one Ashes Test during the summer would be a “bonus” for him after his return from injury, which kept him out of the sport for nearly two years. Archer is aware of opportunities that are before him in 2023, with a home Ashes summer and defence of 50-over World Cup title in India during October-November after it. These are the events which helped him announce his arrival at international level back in 2019. “It is pretty similar actually. If you caught form at the right time in 2019, you probably would have been able to carry it throughout the whole summer, whereas now you have got a couple of months before the World Cup,” said Archer as quoted by ESPNCricinfo.
“Hopefully this summer will have the opportunity to surpass it, but I do not think there will be many other summers of cricket that are better than that. If I can play one game this summer, I will be happy. If I play more than one, that’s a bonus,” added Archer.
Archer said that he has surpassed his ambitions in battling back from persistent injury to resume his international career. He is in midst of a great, but cautious return to action across all formats. He has claimed a total of 13 wickets in four ODIs and a T20I since his comeback against South Africa in January. It includes a spell of 6/40 against the same opponents in an ODI last month.
After this T20I series against Bangladesh, he will link up with Mumbai Indians for the Indian Premier League (IPL).
His schedule is demanding, with his IPL season bleeding right into England’s Test summer against Ireland and Australia in June-July. But it is vastly preferable to Archer’s status during this time last year, when his recovery from two elbow operations was interrupted by a back stress fracture.
“Sometimes you have still got that little feeling in the back of your mind that you are still not ready yet,” Archer said.
“But I just put that behind me and, whatever happens, happens. If you are supposed to get injured again, then there is nothing you can do about it. But till that time comes I am just going to give everything I have got.”
“Coming back and playing cricket for England again means I have already done what I wanted to do. I said 18 months ago I was going to be back, and now I am back hopefully I have a long career, so it makes no sense doing too much too soon,” concluded Archer.
Archer has committed to taking things easy in Bangladesh, saying, “In Bangladesh, I am not going to be charging in trying to bowl 95mph. It sounds a little bit bad but wickets where you put everything in and you do not get anything out, you are just putting yourself at risk. There is still a bit more rust I need to take off, but for now I am happy with how it has gone, with how the body has held up. There is always more in the tank but I am progressing and peaking at the right time.”
“There is a lot of cricket coming up and I am just doing everything I can to stay on the park. I do not think I can play all of it, it probably would not be sensible to, but whatever the medical team tells me I can do, I am all for it,” concluded Archer.
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