Archer dropped from 2nd Test due to breach of bio-secure protocols

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16 Jul 2020 | 07:26 AM
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AFP

Archer dropped from 2nd Test due to breach of bio-secure protocols

Archer will now commence five days of isolation and will undergo two COVID-19 tests in this period, which have to test negative before his self-isolation period is lifted

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England paceman Jofra Archer was ruled out of the second Test against the West Indies for breaking coronavirus "protocols", giving the home side a major headache as they seek to level the series.

Both teams have been living in "bio-secure bubble" sites at the Ageas Bowl, the venue for last week's first Test, and Emirates Old Trafford, where the final two matches of the series will take place.

Sussex fast bowler Archer broke the rules by going home to Brighton on Monday following the end of the first Test, before the team travelled up to Manchester. 

His removal from the squad was announced just three hours before Thursday's scheduled 1000 GMT start in Manchester.

He apologised for putting his teammates in "danger" and will now undergo five days of self-isolation.

"I am extremely sorry for what I have done," Archer, who played in last week's first Test, said in an England and Wales Cricket Board statement.

"I have 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."

Angry response 

Archer, who had been retained in the squad while fellow quicks James Anderson and Mark Wood were rested, will need to test negative twice for COVID-19 before his isolation period is lifted.

"The West Indies team have been made aware and are satisfied with the measures that have been imposed," the ECB statement said.

A spokesman said the breach had come to light late on Wednesday. He could not confirm if Archer would face further disciplinary action in addition to missing the second Test.

His breach of the rules, however, is likely to provoke an angry response from officials after they made strenuous efforts to persuade both the West Indies and Pakistan to tour England despite tens of thousands of coronavirus deaths in Britain.

Earlier in the campaign, there was real concern that COVID-19 could wipe out the entire 2020 home English cricket programme, with the ECB predicting losses running into hundreds of millions of pounds.

England have not called up a replacement into their second Test squad for Barbados-born quick Archer, who burst onto the international scene last year when he bowled the decisive Super Over in the World Cup final win over New Zealand at Lord's.

Archer's absence deprives England of genuine speed on a pitch with a reputation for aiding fast bowlers.

The 25-year-old hit the 90 miles per hour mark during a return of 3-45 in the second innings at Southampton -- although the West Indies still won the first Test by four wickets.

Unless England go back on their decision to rest Anderson and Wood, it will mean that Ben Stokes is the only survivor from their pace attack that played in the first Test.

Stand-in skipper Stokes is set to hand back the reins to Joe Root at Old Trafford after the regular England captain missed the first Test to attend the birth of his second child.

If West Indies win one of the two remaining matches they will secure their first Test series win in England for 32 years.

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EnglandJofra Chioke ArcherOld Trafford, ManchesterWest Indies tour of England, 2020England vs West Indies - 2nd Test - The Wisden Trophy, 2020

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