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Jofra Archer tests his levers for Sussex second XI as return from elbow injury begins

These were circumstances that, ordinarily, make cricketers question their life choices. A biting, blustery day on the South Coast, with a ragged wind harassing the bowlers in their run-ups and the batters in their stances. The first-team squad went through their paces for a while in the nets behind the square, but not a soul in the flats overlooking the 1st Central County Ground bothered to poke their heads out to observe the twos going about their business – Sussex versus Surrey in the Second XI County Championship.

The sun made infrequent appearances, but only of the “look what you could have won” variety. Slip fielders stood stiff-limbed in the cordon, hands jammed deep into pockets, When people talk of four-day cricket being pushed to the margins of the summer, these are the clichéd conditions that the mind’s eye conjures up.

And yet, these were also the conditions in which one of the most sought-after cricketers on the planet was making his comeback from injury. For a man who spends most of his professional life on the road – or, in the current climate, in hotel-rooms of varying degrees of solitude – home, aka Hove, is most definitely where Jofra Archer’s heart is.

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ESPNcricinfo is a sports news website exclusively for the game of cricket. The site features news, articles, live coverage of cricket matches, and StatsGuru, a database of historical matches and players from the 18th century to the present. As of March 2018, Sambit Bal was the editor.

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