England fast bowler Jofra Archer had an infuriating outing in the ongoing Boxing Day Test against South Africa at the SuperSport Park in Centurion. After managing to scalp only one wicket in the first wicket, the young fast bowler claimed two wickets in the ongoing second innings. However, Archer escaped a beamer suspension after bowling two consecutive beamers of which one was called a legal delivery by the umpires.

The incident took place in the penultimate over the day’s play. Jofra Archer appeared to be called for a second no-ball by the square-leg umpire Paul Reiffel after ending his day with a pair of beamers. While there is no doubt both deliveries were unintentional – replays suggested Archer had attempted to bowl two successive knuckle-balls.

Jofra Archer
Jofra Archer (Credits: Sky Sports)

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Jofra Archer escapes suspension

ICC’s Test playing conditions dictate that any bowler who has delivered two such balls should be suspended from bowling for the rest of the innings. But the umpires also appeared to rescind the no-ball call on the basis that the second delivery was dipping towards the stumps and should be considered more of a full-toss than a beamer. But Jofra Archer remains on a warning which means another such beamer, and he will have to watch the game from the dressing room.

Speaking at the end of the game, South Africa’s Vernon Philander called on the umpires to “stand your ground” and withdraw Jofra Archer from the attack in the ongoing Test. He also asked the umpires to set the right examples for those coming into the game.

Vernon Philander
Vernon Philander. Credit: AFP

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“I don’t know what happened, but there was a little bit of a conversation going on after the game. For me, it’s plain and simple. We’re playing a game, and we’re setting an example for the rest of the people coming into this game,” said Philander, speaking about the incident with Archer.

“You’ve got to make the right call. Are we going to tolerate it at another game or are we going to put a stop to it right here. It’s in the hands of the umpires. That’s why it’s called the purest format, don’t try silly things that can cost you not bowling another ball in the innings. Umpires have to make a call, and hopefully, it’s the right one for the game looking forward,” Philander added.

Speaking of the game, it is evenly poised with South Africa leading by 175 runs in the second innings with six wickets in hand. With three days still to play, the fans will certainly expect a result in the Test match.

Ankush Das

I am an accountant by qualification, my parents thought their obedient son would study further to become a CA, but I had other things in mind. An ardent Cricket fan is following his passion and making a living watching and working around his favorite sport.