New Zealand vs England 2019: Joe Root confident of Jofra Archer's strong return
A 1-0 series defeat at the hands of New Zealand was a learning curve for the young English side. England captain Joe Root fought personal demons himself, as he registered a double ton in the second Test. While the batting line-up had a new-look, the bowling department rested more on the shoulders of Stuard Broad and Jofra Archer.
Archer's average performances were defended by captain Root, with the England captain stating that Archer has the potential to deliver in Test cricket. Root said that the fast bowler has tremendous potential and just needed time to get things settled in his head.
"I think he'll learn a huge amount from this, I really do… He's obviously an extremely exciting talent and he's got so much to offer Test cricket and this team and I'm sure it won't be long till we see him tear it up again.”
"I think he's found out there are a number of ways you've got to be able to operate and you've got to show real resilience sometimes when it does get quite flat and keep putting in time and time again, which he did.”
Also see – World Test Championship Schedule
Archer took a total of only two wickets in two Test matches, facing the brunt of the longest format most cruelly. However, you cannot take anything away from the gutsy New Zealand batsmen who played Archer with an amazing balance of caution and aggression.
BJ Watling and Mitchell Santner were particularly good as they applied themselves against Archer and played each ball on merit. Root revealed that Archer has a good mix of deliveries in his armour and just required experience under his belt to execute his variations at the right time in a match. Speaking at the post-match press conference, Root said:
"He showed a great amount of variety in trying to take wickets and produce an opportunity… Bowling with no front arm, bowling his knuckle balls, a couple of leg-cutters and a quick bouncer every now and again to change the pace. It shows he's got all the skills that are there, it's now just putting it all together. I'm sure he'll learn very quickly and I'm pretty confident we'll get the best out of him soon."
Root also praised the opposition bowling attack and spoke highly of left-arm pacer Neil Wagner who bowled a match-winning spell in the first Test. He said:
"You've got to learn from the opposition as well. You look at someone like Neil Wagner - he's got a big heart, a big engine, and keeps running. And that's what you want, you want guys who, time and time again, want to be putting themselves in that position, to keep wanting to create chances and keep trying to change the game."