England white-ball head coach Matthew Mott has revealed they decided against stress-testing Jofra Archer in Bangladesh with the Ashes in mind.
It is an understandable stance given Archer’s well-documented elbow and back problems that kept him out of the international fray for 22 months until his return in South Africa in January.
He has made encouraging progress with 12 wickets in four ODIs but Mott admitted England erred on the side of caution when ruling out fielding Archer twice in three days against Bangladesh last week.
Asked whether the prospect was considered, the Australian said: “Not really, no. The medical advice was definitely not back-to-back games.”
With Wednesday marking 100 days until the start of the Ashes, Archer playing in both the first and second ODIs against Bangladesh may have been an indicator of his readiness for red-ball cricket.
His workload from now until the start of England’s summer programme will be a diet of T20s – first in a three-match series against Bangladesh before jetting to the Indian Premier League – but Mott is confident the 27-year-old will peak at the right time for the Ashes and World Cup campaigns this year.
“He’s a box office player,” Mott said. “He’s fitted back into the group beautifully and it’s an incredible effort for a fast bowler to be out for that long and come back and play as he has done.
“He would admit that he’s not fully firing on all cylinders. You can just see he’s ticking all the boxes to get back to his best.
“He just seems to be really slowly, strategically just making sure he’s doing it right and ticking over and come the Ashes, come the World Cup, I’m sure you’ll see him back to his best.”
Archer has been part of an impressive bowling unit in Bangladesh which claimed 10 wickets in all three ODIs as England sealed a hard-fought 2-1 win.
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Source by [earlynews24.com]