(Reuters) – The addition of Jofra Archer in the side allows England to pick up wickets at any stage of an innings during the World Cup, former captain Kevin Pietersen has said.Archer’s World Cup debut, where he picked up three wickets in England’s 104-run victory over South Africa, was among the early tournament highlights after he was fast-tracked into the hosts’ one-day international setup.
The Barbados-born quick is now expected to lead the pace attack with Mark Wood when they take on Pakistan in their second match later on Monday.
“The addition of Jofra Archer to that setup gives England the capabilities to take wickets from overs one to 50,” Pietersen told Sky Sports.
“Occasionally they might get a couple of wickets with the new ball and then try and back (leg-spinner Adil) Rashid to get wickets. If Rashid doesn’t get any wickets in the middle overs then they struggle.
“Archer can knock over the top order of every single team. He can then come in the middle of the innings and get a couple of wickets from short pitched deliveries and then at the death he is a fantastic bowler.”
Archer impressed Pietersen during the Big Bash Twenty20 league in Australia where he picked up 35 wickets in 28 games for Hobart Hurricanes.
The 24-year-old is yet to make his test debut and Pietersen backed him to make England’s squad to team up with veteran fast bowlers James Anderson and Stuart Broad when they take on Australia in the Ashes series, which begins in August.
“Having faced him, having played with him in Australia in the Big Bash, he is something to be looked after just because of the pace and bounce,” Pietersen added. “He has the ability to take wickets all the way throughout the innings.
“He is a special, special talent. I’m telling you now it should be an Anderson, Broad and Jofra Archer combination come the first test matches of the Ashes.”
Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; editing by Sudipto Ganguly
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