'It has most definitely been good to get away... playing at this level is demanding and taxing on the body': Jofra Archer relieved to have had a break from cricket after a successful debut summer with England
Jofra Archer has welcomed the break from cricket after an intense debut summer with England across the Test and one-day formats of the game.
After qualifying for England on residency grounds in March, the Barbados-born bowler shone with the ball as England won the Cricket World Cup on home soil before drawing 2-2 with eternal rivals Australia in a closely-fought Ashes series.
Such was Archer's impact with both the white and red ball, the 24-year-old was afforded little time away from the sport until the end of the fifth and final Test against Australia at The Oval on September 16.
Jofra Archer says he has enjoyed his break from cricket after a busy summer with England
The 24-year-old claimed 20 wickets as England won the Cricket World Cup on home soil
He then followed that up with a starring role as England drew 2-2 with Australia in the Ashes
But having been given some time away from cricket, Archer believes it has been good for him and allowed him to recharge the batteries.
'I have not seen a cricket ball in four weeks!' he told Sportsmail exclusively. 'It has most definitely been good to get away as I think your body needs a break but your mind needs it more than anything.
'This summer has taught me how hard international cricket is. It was a bit of a step up with England for the first few months for me. Playing at this level is demanding and taxing on the body. I think the key is managing your body and time as well.'
Next up for the fast bowler is England's upcoming tour of New Zealand in November and December. Archer has been selected for both the five-game one-day international series as well as the two-Test encounter that follows.
And looking ahead to his first tour as an England player, he says that confidence within the squad is high after their fantastic summer.
Archer says the England squad's confidence is high after their success in both formats
'I haven't been around the boys but I can tell you that the last game of the summer that we had [at the Oval] we won and everyone was in a really good mood.
'This is probably one of the better teams I've ever played in so everyone will be in good stead for New Zealand.'
An avid-gamer Archer has confirmed that he will be taking his Xbox One and the popular game Fortnite with him for the trip. And the man who appeared to have his own cheat code during the Cricket World Cup, taking 20 wickets during the tournament, says winning that has still not sunk in – especially the manner it came in via a super over against New Zealand at Lord's.
'It's not until I go into the living room and see my medal and then I think 'yeah I helped achieve that'. I still can't believe that we've won it and the margin of how we won it by as well.'
Archer was speaking to Sportsmail at the launch of The Hundred where the eight franchise teams were unveiled in east London.
Archer will be representing the Southern Brave in The Hundred which launches next summer
The Sussex quick was selected for his local franchise the Southern Brave – who will play their cricket at The Ageas Bowl in Southampton.
While his home matches won't be in Hove, like he is used to with Sussex, Archer is happy to be within the realms of home comforts in what will be a new format to him and the sport.
'It feels good to be representing a team so close to home as if I do have a few days off I'll be sure to go there.
'I'm not going in there with any expectations [about the format] as I'm going in with an open mind. This is a new format and you never know where it could go, it could be the next best thing.
'I think I'll go in to it with the same approach as I do have with the T20. I'll try and adapt to it in case anything needs changing.'
The fast bowler believes The Hundred will prove a hit as it looks to entice a new audience
The five-week competition will be played at the height of summer, starting July 2020, featuring eight new city-based teams from Manchester, Leeds, Nottingham, Birmingham, Cardiff, Southampton and two in London (Lord's and the Oval).
The Hundred has received criticism from some cricket traditionalists with its 10-ball over format aimed to entice a completely new audience. However, Archer believes the format will prove a hit – with the England squad already excited about the prospect of going up against each other.
'I think it will do straight away,' he said when asked if he believes The Hundred could be a success.
'Obviously everyone wants to know about the new format, who are the players and where are they playing so I think we should attract some interest straight away. As long as the tournament goes well it should attract more people.
'There's banter going around already [around the England camp] as it's probably the only time you're going to be able to play against your friends. In first class or county cricket everyone may not be available so this is the one time that everyone can play against each other.'
Banter between the England squad ahead of The Hundred's launch has already started