Barbados born Jofra Archer could be eligible to play for England in time for the next year’s World Cup and the Ashes, after the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced a change to its eligibility criteria.
Archer, who represented the West Indies at Under-19 level, has been on with Sussex since joining them in 2015. More recently, the Barbadian has plied his trade in franchise cricket around the world - most noticeably earning an IPL contract worth £800,000 for Rajasthan Royals in last year’s auction.
Under the previous ECB regulations, Archer was to serve a seven-year residency qualification, which would have made him available to England in 2022. The terms of that regulation also required him to be in the UK for 210 days a year.
In a press release, the ECB confirmed the changing criteria for players who had moved to the UK after their 18th birthday, stating that the new regulations brought the board into line with the ICC's own regulations, which were themselves amended this year from four years to three.
The change will come into force on 1 January 2019.
However, it is understood that, in order to meet his 210-day limit in time for that tour, Archer might have to forgo some of his oversees commitments, including this winter's Big Bash.
Following are terms agreed to by the ECB in its latest board meeting:
Bring the ECB regulations closer to those of the ICC, after the amendments made to their own regulations earlier this year
Provide a level of fairness for individual players affected by the previous regulations
British Citizenship and,
Either born in England/Wales, or three years residence (a total of 210 days/year April-March) and
Not played as a local player in professional international or domestic cricket in a Full Member country within the last three years
British citizenship; or
Born in England/Wales; or
Three years residence (on a rolling basis) and not having played for another Full Member country in the past 3 years
British citizenship; and
Either born in England/Wales, or seven-year residence if moving from a Full Member country and arriving after 18th birthday, or four years if moving from an Associate Member County or arriving before 18th birthday (residence=210 day/year April-March); and
Not played as a local player in professional international or domestic cricket in a full member country within 4/7years