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July 13, 2019

Archer takes World Cup final in his stride


July 13, 2019

BIRMINGHAM: Jofra Archer says he will have no problems keeping his cool even during a World Cup final that comes just over two months after his England debut.

The 24-year-old Barbados-born fast bowler, whose father is English, made his international debut in May after changes to the England and Wales Cricket Board’s residency rules saw him become eligible sooner than expected.

The Sussex paceman played a key role in England’s eight-wicket semi-final thrashing of Australia at Edgbaston on Thursday, trapping captain Aaron Finch lbw with his first ball of the match.

England have never won the World Cup and made the last of their three losing appearances in the final in 1992 — before Archer was born. Archer, however, is determined the showpiece occasion at the ‘home of cricket’ will not overwhelm him.

“I don’t think it’s really sunk in yet. But the calmer you are the better you are in these situations,” he said. “I just think I’ve always been like this. I try not to get nervous because then you end up doing stuff that you are not really supposed to do.

“Butterflies? Not really. Even when we were at breakfast before Australia. I may be wrong but I don’t think anyone looked nervous. Everyone just looked focused by the time we got into the ground. It’s those little things that make you feel like the guys are really ready.”

Archer’s ability to bowl at sharp pace in seemingly effortless fashion makes him a tough customer to face, particularly when he unleashes a bouncer with no change to a relaxed action. Alex Carey misjudged such a delivery on Thursday, a short ball from Archer knocking off his helmet and cutting him on the chin before the patched-up wicketkeeper carried on.

“Sometimes you don’t always mean to hit them,” explained Archer. “When it hits them you feel a little bit bad for doing it but it’s cricket.”

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