England fast bowler Jofra Archer has asserted that the rest and rotation policy is the need of the hour in times of COVID-19. Archer, who had missed the second Test due to an injury, also added that the D/N Test is extremely important as a win here would put the visitors into the driver’s seat.
England’s rest and rotation policy has been a major talking point in the ongoing Test series. As a result of the policy, all the first-choice players aren’t available at the same time. For instance, Jonny Bairstow and Mark Wood have joined the squad for the Ahmedabad leg of the series but they weren’t available earlier since they played in the Sri Lanka Tests.
Similarly, Jos Buttler left the series after playing the first Test while the same was the case with all-rounder Moeen Ali post the second game. This has been a new normal in English cricket and fast bowler Jofra Archer feels that’s it’s a much-needed move given the COVID times.
“I think it’s necessary especially now during COVID and stuff, there’s a lot of resting and quarantine periods. I think rest and rotation is necessary for now. That’s why we have such a big squad. Touchwood everyone is fit, but it’s very unlikely, someone will go down with injury. The last thing we need is to be scrambling for a replacement, so I think the beauty of a big squad is that we can see everyone on a daily basis, even if they are not in the squad or in the team, you can still see what they can do,” Archer said during a virtual media interaction, reported TOI.
Presently, the ongoing series is leveled at 1-1, and it makes the upcoming third Test an extremely important affair for both teams. Archer pretty well knows this and said that if England wins the D/N Test, they will go into the final Test with a big advantage.
“Oh yes. I think that’s why this next Test is important. If we do go ahead we can always draw (fourth Test). We always play to win but this next one puts us in the driver’s seat, I think we control the last game if we win this one,” he said.
There is a lot of anticipation surrounding the pink-ball Test as it would only be the second time that India will be staging a day-night Test. Jofra remarked that the pink-ball does a lot under lights and remains harder for a bit longer.
“It feels like a normal pink ball to be honest. Used the pink ball a couple of times, it’s pretty much the same, it scruffs a little bit, little bit hard to shine but usually stays a little bit harder. And when the lights come on it does a little bit more than it does during the day so you know it’s pretty consistent I would say.”
In Asian conditions, spin becomes the central point with pacers playing second fiddle given the help the slower bowlers get out of the surfaces. But it isn’t something that bothers Jofra as he knows what he’s expected to do in the spin-friendly conditions.
“I think in India spinners play a big role. Don’t think the captain expects you (a pacer) to get a five-for or six-for in the subcontinent, you get two or three and you’ve done your job. I think that is our job,” said Archer on his role in the side.