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Jofra Archer to be Available for England in 2019 after ECB's Change in Regulation

Cricketnext Staff |November 29, 2018, 10:41 PM IST
Jofra Archer to be Available for England in 2019 after ECB's Change in Regulation

Speedster Jofra Archer could well be part of England's World Cup as well as Ashes squad in 2019 after the England & Wales Cricket Board announced a change in its eligibility criteria following a board meeting held at Lord's on Wednesday.

The 23-year-old, who was born and raised in Barbados but holds a British passport has been one of the most sought-after players in the recent times. He played for the West Indies at the Under-19 level but moved to the English county side Sussex in 2015 on the recommendation of Chris Jordan. He has since been a regular in the squad and has made quite a name for himself as a quick bowler and a hard-hitting batsman down the order.

Under ECB's earlier regulations Archer would have had to serve a seven-year residency period in the country which would have made him available only in 2022 but in an effort to "bring the ECB regulations closer to those of the ICC (International Cricket Council)," that period has been brought down to three years from January 1, 2019.

The new ECB eligibility criteria for players, both men and women, from 1 January 2019, are:

a) British Citizenship and,

b) Either born in England/Wales, or three years residence (a total of 210 days/year April-March) and

c) Not played as a local player in professional international or domestic cricket in a Full Member country within the last three years

However, Archer won't be available for England from January 1 as originally thought as he would not have spent at least 210 days in the UK, which is the minimum amount of time necessary in his third year of residency until mid-March next year. This means it is highly unlikely that he would be able to make a debut during the ODI series between England and the Windies slated to be played in February in the Caribbean.

"The exact date of Jofra’s qualification will depend on the time he spends out of the country during the rest of 2018/19," read a release from Sussex.

Archer is undoubtedly one of the most talked-about players going around for the last year or so ever since he hogged the limelight with his exploits in the Big Bash League for Hobart Hurricanes. He was picked up by Rajasthan Royals in the IPL 2018 for INR 7.2 Cr and had a telling impact with the ball and bat in the latter half of the tournament.

With England needing an out and out fast bowler in their ODI setup, Archer's availability comes as a huge boost ahead of the World Cup that they will be hosting.

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