Playing IPL and Big Bash along with all three formats increased Jofra Archer's workload, says skipper Joe Root

Playing IPL and Big Bash along with all three formats increased Jofra Archer’s workload, says skipper Joe Root

Speaking ahead of England’s third and final ODI against South Africa on Sunday, Root said Archer was not overworked.

Jofra Archer
Jofra Archer. (Photo by Vishal Bhatnagar/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Overdose of cricket is becoming a challenge for almost every nation. India of late have seen a number of their top players getting ruled out because of injury which has raised a question over their workloads. From Bhuvneshwar Kumar to Hardik Pandya to Shikhar Dhawan to Rohit Sharma, the list of injuries-hit players is only getting longer. And now, England are also facing similar questions over the injury to their premier pacer Jofra Archer.

The 24-year-old West Indian-born Archer, who England had fast-tracked to play for their national side before the World Cup last year, has bowled more overs than any other team-mate in 2019. And that too after he made his international debut only in May. He has also been made to bowl the third-most number of overs for any seamer in international cricket during the same period.

England Test captain Joe Root has recently denied the charges that the Three Lions team management overburdened Archer. It was revealed last week that the fiery fast bowler has suffered a stress fracture in his right elbow which was earlier not diagnosed by scans. Archer has been ruled out of the upcoming tour of Sri Lanka and is likely to miss this season of the Indian Premier League as well.

For Root, county and franchise cricket hurt Jofra Archer more

Speaking ahead of England’s third and final ODI against South Africa on Sunday, Root said Archer was not overworked. He said it irrespective of the fact that Archer has bowled 274 overs in Tests in which Root captains and of which, 42 came in a single innings of the game which was the bowler’s first overseas. Instead, the England Test skipper held the volume of county and franchise cricket that Archer has played before arriving on the international scene as the main reason for his injury.

“I wouldn’t say he’s been over bowled. You look at the amount of cricket he’s played before he played for England, he’s played a huge amount,” Root, who led the Three Lions to a 3-1 win in the four-match Test series against South Africa, said.

“An important part of it now is the amount of cricket there is, it’s pretty full-on if you’re playing all three formats. Chuck an IPL in there as well and the Big Bash and stuff he’s played beforehand, that’s a lot of cricket.

“One of the pleasing things is we are really clear on what the injury is now and it ended up being the right call for him not playing in that last Test match [against South Africa] because it could have done further damage and been a really tough one for him. We’re all gutted for him missing out,” Root added.

Root also seconded the thought of England’s limited-overs captain Eoin Morgan who said taking a break away from the international schedule helps. “That’s a lot of mental fatigue as well as physical. I think it will be good for him to have a mental break, to get some time away from the game, to get refreshed,” he said.

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