Jofra Archer may be an England player by the end of next week and Sussex team-mate Chris Jordan has no doubt he will take the next step in his career in his stride.
The 24-year-old could make his international bow less than three years after his Sussex debut when England play Ireland next Friday in the first of six one-day internationals as part of their preparation for the World Cup.
If Archer impresses in Dublin, and also in the five-match series against Pakistan that follows, there is every chance he will make the final cut for the World Cup squad.
During Archer’s remarkable rise, Jordan has mentored someone he refers to as his ‘little brother’ and the two Barbadians could well play together for England in the next few weeks after Jordan’s inclusion in the squad, three years since he played the most recent of his 31 ODIs for England.
He laughs when it is suggested that he must be fed up of being asked questions about his friend, saying: “Put it this way, if I had a pound every time I am asked a question about Jofra I’d be a rich man for sure!”
But after watching Archer enjoy another eye-catching spell in the Indian Premier League for Rajasthan Royals, Jordan is sure he will tackle his next challenge with few fears. “I can see him doing anything in the game such is his quality, his talent is undoubted,” Jordan said. “The biggest thing for me is that every time he is asked to step his game up a level, he rises to it. The world is his oyster.
“It’s not even one game or one day at a time with Jofra, it’s one moment at a time. I’m quite similar – who knows what might happen in two or three months so you might as well stay in the moment and enjoy that. Jof is good at doing that. He’s been putting in top performances in the IPL again but when he gets back this week his focus will be on the Pakistan and Ireland series. Who knows after that, but I can see him playing in the Ashes as well.”
As for Jordan himself, he is confident he can make the most of his opportunity and force his way into the World Cup squad by replicating the strong performances he has made in T20 internationals over the longer format. “I know my game’s in good order and I’m in a good head space,” the 30-year-old said.
“A bad head space is not concentrating and feeling pressure. In this game you do feel pressure – anyone who says they don’t is lying – so it’s about knowing your cues, so you get in that good head space, relax and play. It doesn’t get easier with experience because some days you can bowl well and not get that five-for you deserve but you learn to adapt.”
:: A full list of fixtures for the Royal London One-Day Cup can be found here. Tickets for Sussex home matches can be purchased on the county’s website via this link.