Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Jofra Archer joins England practice | David Willey: World Cup omission in 2019 ‘hurt’

Jofra Archer joined England’s practice session at The Kia Oval on Tuesday, keeping alive the prospect of the fast bowler travelling to next month’s Cricket World Cup in India.

Archer, who bowled the super over that secured victory for England in the thrilling final against New Zealand at Lord’s four years ago, has been plagued by injuries since, missing the entire summer with a stress fracture in his troublesome right elbow.

It meant that Archer was not named in England’s provisional 15-player squad for the World Cup, instead listed as a ‘travelling reserve’, which would see him join the team as injury cover in India. England have to finalise their squad for the tournament by September 28.

England’s provisional World Cup squad

  • Jos Buttler (captain)
  • Moeen Ali
  • Gus Atkinson
  • Jonny Bairstow
  • Sam Curran
  • Liam Livingstone
  • Dawid Malan
  • Adil Rashid
  • Joe Root
  • Jason Roy
  • Ben Stokes
  • Reece Topley
  • David Willey
  • Mark Wood
  • Chris Woakes

Archer linked up with the team in south London on Tuesday as they completed their preparations for the third one-day international against New Zealand on Wednesday – live on Sky Sports Cricket from 12pm. The 28-year-old bowled an extended spell off his long run-up, followed by a gentler display of left-arm spin.

Wednesday 13th September 12:00pm

David Willey, who was cut from England’s preliminary squad for the 2019 World Cup in order to make way for the newly-available Archer, admitted the paceman looked in good rhythm as he returned to the set-up.

“He looks in a good place,” Willey said. “I don’t know where he is at, fitness-wise, but he was bowling with good wheels out there today.

“Everyone knows how good he is, what he’s capable of and how he can impact games. So to have him close, or not far away from being fit, is fantastic news.”

Willey: I thought my England career was over

As for his misfortune to miss out in 2019, Willey recalled: “I’d been a big part of that [team] from 2015 through to that World Cup, so there were mixed emotions the day they won it.

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David Willey reflects on missing out on England’s 2019 World Cup triumph but believes the experience will serve him well in other areas of his life moving forward

“I was obviously delighted for the lads, but it hurt. I’d have probably given my left arm to be a part of that.

“I think anything that happens to me in cricket now is never going to be as bad as that. As my career in the game goes on, and whatever I do after, I think that’s probably a difficult but great experience for me to have – hopefully it can serve me well in other areas of my life.”

On the potential for changes again being made to the squad this time and potentially the same fate befalling him, Willey added: “They haven’t got to finalise a squad until the end of the month, so it can obviously change.

“It’s out of my control, just like it was out of my control in 2019. I play the cricket that’s in front of me.

“If it wasn’t for Covid [in 2020], I probably thought that my England career was done. They picked the two squads [to stay in bubbles] for the Test matches in Manchester and one-dayers in Southampton.

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Highlights from England’s rain-reduced win against New Zealand in the second ODI as Liam Livingstone and Reece Topley impressed

“I made a promise to myself to enjoy every game for England as if it’s my last, and I try to do that now.

“Things change, and if it changes for me, it’s nothing I haven’t been through before.

“I’m going to go out there and perform, try to win games of cricket for England. It’s not my job to decide who goes on the plane.”

Watch cricket, including the World Cup, live on Sky Sports or stream with NOW.

England’s third ODI against New Zealand is live on Sky Sports Cricket from 12pm on Wednesday (12.30pm first ball).

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