'Archer’s availability in the next season is too far ahead': Mahela Jayawerdene

Debashis Sarangi

| May 20, 5:01 PM

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Mumbai Indians have had a forgettable journey in IPL 2022 as the five-time champions are reeling at the bottom-most position of the points table with just three wins from thirteen games.

One of the major reasons behind MI's shambolic returns in this IPL is the ordinary performance of their bowlers in the earlier phase of the tournament. MI spent a mammoth amount (INR 8 crores) on an injured Jofra Archer as a part of their future plans and got the likes of Jaydev Unadkat, Basil Thampi and Tymal Mills as their first-choice bowlers for this season, which badly backfired them.

In an unfortunate turn of events, Archer, who was getting ready to be back in action after recovering from his shoulder injury, was recently ruled out of the entire English summer owing to a stress fracture. Looking at Archer's injury issues, his participation in IPL 2023 seems highly doubtful at the moment. Moreover, the English seamer's recent injury is nothing short of a knockout punch on the face of Mumbai Indians as they are highly dependent on his availability for the success of their bowling unit in the next season.

However, the MI head coach Mahela Jayawardene doesn't seem to be significantly worried about Archer's injury at present. The former Sri Lankan captain has said that the next IPL is ten months away from now, and therefore, Archer will get a huge amount of time to recover from his recently sustained injury. Jayawardene, who played 652 international matches for Sri Lanka, revealed that MI's experts will monitor Archer's progress. He also expected the ace English seamer to be available for Mumbai in the next season.  

"I think to be honest, it is too far ahead. Our team of experts will keep monitoring his (Archer's) progress. He didn't have these injuries in the past, so it is something new," Jayawardene said. 

"Hopefully it is nothing too bad. So we will see how he progresses, but 10 months till next IPL, so there is a lot of time to assess his situation and we are hoping that he makes a strong recovery and he will be available for us next season," the 44-year-old concluded. 

To note, Archer has played 35 IPL games for the Rajasthan Royals, in which he has picked 46 wickets at a good economy of 7.13. Regarded as a beast in the powerplay, Archer hasn't played cricket since March 2021, owing to frequent injury issues. We certainly hope the Barbados-born fast bowler recovers from the stress fracture soon and amazes us with his extraordinary bowling skills.

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