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MI Cape Town sign England fast bowler Jofra Archer as wildcard for inaugural SA20

England fast bowler Jofra Archer is set to ply his trade for MI Cape Town after being picked as a wildcard entry for the inaugural edition of SA20 to be played from January 10 to February 11.

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MI Cape Town sign England pacer Jofra Archer as wildcard for inaugural SA20. Courtesy: Reuters
MI Cape Town sign England pacer Jofra Archer as wildcard for inaugural SA20. Courtesy: Reuters

In Short

  • Archer is 1 of the 2 wildcard picks in SA20
  • Jofra Archer hasn’t played for England since March 2021
  • Archer hit Zak Crawley on the helmet during a 3-day warm-up match

By India Today Web Desk: MI Cape Town, on Wednesday, November 23, roped in England fast bowler Jofra Archer as a wildcard pick for the inaugural edition of the SA T20 to be played from January 10 to February 11.

Graeme Smith, the SA20 commissioner, said that the wildcard entry would "offer our teams an opportunity to add another world-class player to their squad". It was unveiled by Cricket South Africa (CSA) on Monday, November 21.

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Apart from MI Cape Town, Sunrisers Eastern Cape roped in South Africa uncapped batter Jordan Hermann and is the only other team to bring in a wildcard entry.

The wildcard picks will have a minimum salary of Rand 175,000 (US$ 10,290 approx).

Archer’s strong comeback

As far as Archer is concerned, he has faced quite a few injury concerns, especially over the last two years. He hasn’t played international cricket since England’s T20I series against India way back in March 2021.

Recently, he made his comeback to competitive cricket in England’s warm-up match against England Lions at the Tolerance Oval in Abu Dhabi.

Archer looked in decent rhythm and also hit right-handed batter Zak Crawley on the helmet with a well-directed bouncer. Crawley said that Archer’s bouncers are lethal and can hurry on to batters.

"They say you can add 3mph [5kph] to that. When he pitches up, he's obviously still quick, but he's nowhere near as quick when he's bowling short. Jof's bouncers certainly feel a lot quicker and I didn't really manage to get out of the way of that first one and that's just the way he is. He's got such a great wrist,” Crawley said.

Archer opened the attack for England in the three-day match. At the close of play on Day 1, England raced off to 501 for the loss of seven wickets in 79 overs.