Australia Prepared To Play Jofra Archer, Says Tim Paine Ahead Of 2nd Ashes Test
Jofra Archer impressed in the limited-overs and helped England clinch their first-ever World Cup. The Barbados-born fast bowler has now set his sights on the red-ball cricket.
Archer missed the first Test at Edgbaston because of a side strain
Australia are currently leading the five-match series 1-0
Australia thumped England in the Ashes opener
Jofra Archer is expected to make his debut for England in the longest format of the game in the second Ashes Test against Australia, beginning on Wednesday at Lord's. Australia skipper Tim Paine on Tuesday lauded the England star pacer, calling him a "great asset" for the hosts. Tim Paine admitted that Jofra Archer is skillful and Australia team is lucky that plenty of batsmen have faced him earlier. Australia registered a massive 251-run victory over England in the Ashes opener at Edgbaston, thanks to Steve Smith's successive centuries.
"Coming into this series, we knew Jofra was going to be a key player for them at some stage. We are a bit lucky, given the guys have faced him, albeit in Big Bash cricket. We know how good Jofra is, we know he bowls fast, we know he is very skillful, he is a great asset for them. It's not every day a 6'5 or 6'6 West Indian turns up on your doorstep. We're prepared to play him, it's his first Test match as well, so there is going to be plenty of pressure on him," ICC quoted Paine as saying.
Skipper Paine, who made his Test debut at Lord's nine years back, is keen to play at the historic venue.
"I've been here a number of times since [the debut], but I still sort of remember coming through those gates the first time. It's one of those grounds, you get a similar sort of feeling, whether you've been here 10 times, 100 times or it's your first time. It's just got that sort of feel about it with the history. I think it's just a special place to come and play cricket," said Paine.
"Everyone, whether you're English or Australian or from anywhere else, you enjoy coming to this ground," he added.
Paine revealed that in early days of his career he used to take a lot of pressure but with time he learned the art of enjoying cricket.
"I probably know a few more things now than I did then. I know one thing is that I certainly take it in a lot more now, enjoy what I'm doing. I think back then, I put a hell of a lot of pressure on myself to perform. Probably too much. Even though I was young, I didn't enjoy the cricket as much as I did the off field. Now I tend to enjoy the cricket more than I do the off field. So it's a nice place to be," Paine said.
Australia are currently leading the five-match series 1-0.