MANCHESTER: England fast bowler Jofra Archer will be available to play in next week’s series finale against the West Indies after being ruled out of the second Test for a breach of coronavirus protocols, the England and Wales Cricket Board announced on Saturday.
Both teams have been living in “bio-secure bubble” sites at the Ageas Bowl, the venue for last week’s first Test, and Emirates Old Trafford, where the final two matches of the series are taking place.
Archer broke the rules by going home to Hove on Monday following England’s four-wicket loss in the first Test at Southampton last week before the team traveled to Manchester.
He was then left out of the ongoing second Test that started on Thursday, with Archer self-isolating in a hotel room for five days at the ground.
But following a disciplinary hearing on Friday, the Barbados-born quick has been fined an “undisclosed amount.”
Archer also received an official written warning, following a hearing chaired by England managing director Ashley Giles, at which his “impeccable record” was taken into account.
The paceman’s agent and a representative from the Professional Cricketers’ Association also attended the hearing. Archer will now undergo two COVID-19 tests, which have to produce negative results, before his self-isolation period is lifted.
An ECB statement said Archer was due to rejoin the squad on Tuesday — three days before Friday’s start of the third Test. Cricketer Ben Stokes also demonstrated a degree of empathy for the plight of Archer.
“The worst thing we could do right now as a team is just leave him and see him in five or six days time.”
He added: “It’s all good being there for people when things are going well and smoothly but what really comes through is how you operate with someone when they need you the most.”