Archer plays in Barbados without Key’s knowledge

Jofra Archer played for his former school side in Barbados without the knowledge of managing director of England men’s cricket Rob Key.

Fast bowler Archer, 28, has not played since March because of an elbow injury.

He was in Barbados training with England’s white-ball sides as part of his recovery.

Archer took 4-18 for Foundation against Lords on day one of a three-day match on Sunday, bowling a mix of pace and left-arm spin.

He is listed on the Barbados Cricket Association Division One scores websiteexternal-link as also having scored 11 with the bat for the side linked to his former school Christ Church Foundation.

The second-tier game continues this weekend, but it is understood Archer has already returned to England.

When asked about Archer playing in the match, Key said: “I’m not aware of that – I’ll find out.”

Archer was not selected in the Test squad to tour India from January.

Key said England were “taking control” of Archer’s return after a series of injuries which have kept him out of Test cricket since 2021, and allowed him to play just seven white-ball games in 2023.

“We’re just going to take it slow with him, we don’t want to put any sort of deadlines on him,” said Key.

“That’s what we’ve done in the past, and we’re trying to learn from that.

“He’s worth his weight in gold.”

Archer, who signed a two-year central contract with England in October, has struggled with a recurring elbow injury since 2020 and has also experienced back problems.

Key said Archer wanted to put himself forward for the 2024 Indian Premier League (IPL) auction but England preferred to monitor his rehabilitation themselves.

The 2024 T20 World Cup in the West Indies and United States takes place in June.

Source: BBC