Chris Jordan hopes to play more international cricket alongside Jofra Archer after the friends featured prominently during England’s victory over Australia in their Twenty20 series opener.
Friday’s dramatic two-run win at Southampton was only the second time the Sussex quicks had been in the same England team. But their connection extends even further with the 31-year-old Jordan having first recommended fellow Barbados-born cricketer Archer to south coast side Sussex.
Last year saw Jordan present Archer with his Test cap when the latter made his debut against Australia and Archer did the honours before play on Friday to mark Jordan’s 50th T20 international appearance.
“The first was his T20 debut in Cardiff (against Pakistan in 2019) and this was the second, so hopefully plenty more to come,” Jordan told a conference call on Saturday when asked about playing for England alongside Archer.
“Jofra said some very kind words, he just talked about how I am around the group, what I bring to the table and how I encouraged him to do as well. It was quite short but very spot on and one of those things that will last in my memory. Nice of him to return the favour.”
Just months after his first England appearance in white-ball cricket, Archer bowled the decisive Super Over in last year’s dramatic World Cup final win over New Zealand before starring in the drawn Ashes series.
But it has not all been plain sailing for the 25-year-old Archer, who was racially abused in New Zealand and then had to withdraw from the second Test against the West Indies in Manchester in July when he breached the bio-secure protocols governing a series being played against the backdrop of the coronavirus pandemic by making a unauthorised visit to his flat in Hove.
But Archer found himself in the spotlight for cricketing reasons on Friday, taking the key wickets of Australia captain Aaron Finch and fellow opener David Warner in a return of 2-33.
“One of the things I told him when I gave him his cap was that at the minute he was on a high but he will experience some low periods,” said Jordan of Archer. “But because of the character he has, he will always find a way of coming through it. The biggest thing for me last night was the amount of times Jofra was smiling. He really looked like he was enjoying himself out there. I started to tease him when he touched 92 mph whether he could touch 95.”
Australia were cruising to victory at 124-1 in the 15th over chasing 163 but England took four wickets in 14 balls to put the match back in the balance. Jordan conceded a mere four runs in the penultimate over before Tom Curran defended a target of 15 off the last as England went 1-0 up ahead of Sunday’s second clash in a three-match series.