|| Desk Report ||
England got a blow when pacer Jofra Archer was ruled out of the second Test against West Indies in Manchester after breaking ECB’s bio-secure protocols.
Hours before the start of the 2nd Test between England and West Indies, pacer Jofra Archer was withdrawn from the squad.
The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) took to the drastic step after finding Archer guilty of breaking the board’s ‘bio-secure protocols’.
Archer is now set to undergo a 5-day isolation period before he is made available for selection in the third and final Test of the series. He will also undergo two COVID-19 tests in this period, the results of which should come negative if Archer is to be considered for selection.
Archer expressed his regret over the actions and accepted the consequences in the statement issued by the board.
“I’m extremely sorry for what I have done,” said Jofra Archer, who did not put any impact in the opening Test with his sublime bowling what he did for the hosts in the 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup at home yard.
“I’ve put, not only myself, but the whole team and management in danger. I fully accept the consequences of my actions, and I want to sincerely apologise to everyone in the bio-secure bubble. It deeply pains me to be missing the Test match, especially with the series poised. I feel like I have let both teams down, and again I am sorry,” Archer told media.
It’s not yet clear as to how exactly Archer broke the bio-secure protocols. With no new player added to the match-day squad, England only can leave out one of Sam Curran, Ollie Robinson and Chris Woakes in the Manchester Test.
What is ECB’s bio-secure bubble?
The ECB had created a bio-secure bubble to prevent players and staff members who are a part of the England vs West Indies bilateral series from contracting the Coronavirus. As part of the norms, the visiting team is made to undergo a 14-day quarantine period before they can begin full-fledged team training.
The bubble cuts players and other participants’ physical contact from all the outside world, with all everything (as per the requirement of the cricketing series) made available within the virtual bubble.
The players are also not allowed to make physical contact with any person outside the bubble. More clarity into Archer’s case is expected to come as the day progresses.