Eoin Morgan: Jofra Archer’s return is in the hands of medical team

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Ben Stokes eager to play ODIs in lead-up to IPL, says England captain

Eoin Morgan has warned that no timeframe should be put on Jofra Archer’s recovery from a long-standing elbow injury, after it was confirmed that he would miss the three-match ODI series in India, starting on Tuesday, as well as the opening rounds of next month’s IPL.

Archer was one of England’s stand-out performers in the 3-2 T20I series defeat against India last week, claiming seven wickets at 22.14 in the five-match series, at an economy rate of 7.75.

However, his condition reportedly worsened as the matches progressed, with his four wicketless overs going for 43 in the final match, his least impactful contribution of the series.

“I can’t give a medical opinion,” Morgan, England’s white-ball captain, said. “We know the situation with his elbow, which got progressively worse, and we know it needs investigation. So only time will tell.

“The duty of care is towards the player. He’s given his heart and soul to us since he’s been involved, so all the care and attention will be given to him in order to get the best result possible.”

Chris Silverwood, England’s head coach, confirmed on Sunday that the decision to rest Archer had been a “mutual” one between the ECB and Rajasthan Royals, for whom he was an outstanding performer in 2020, earning the tournament’s MVP award for his 20 wickets at 18.25.

“Obviously I want Jofra at the World Cup and the Ashes,” Silverwood said. “Both parties have put England first, basically. He needs to get this right. He needs some time to do that so we’ve made space to make sure that we gave him the best chance of being successful for England.”

As to whether he will be able to feature at all for the Royals this season, with the tournament’s final set to take place on May 30, Morgan said the decision would rest with the team’s medical staff.

“It all depends on the outcome of the investigative stuff, the best rehabilitation programme coming back and we’ll go from there,” he said. “We fully trust our medical team, they’ve been outstanding in regards to player welfare and rehabilitation.”

Though Archer will be missing the ODI series, one player who is set to return to the format is his England and Royals team-mate Ben Stokes, who has not played a 50-over match since his starring role in the World Cup final at Lord’s in July 2019.

(With Inputs from ESPN)

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