'I cannot believe how good I feel', Jofra Archer set for Sussex return in Vitality Blast

After battling with elbow injuries over the last two years, Jofra Archer appears ready to return to cricket later this month, with the Sussex bowler eyeing up the Vitality Blast.

Jofra Archer has been a hugely missed presence in cricket, both in the England setup and for Sussex.

The 27-year-old enjoyed a breakthrough tournament in the 2019 World Cup but subsequently struggled with elbow injuries, and after undergoing two surgeries he hasn't played competitively since last July.

Archer has previously spoken about how his injuries left him in a "dark place", with the fast bowler at one point believing he may never play again.

But the good news is that Archer has revealed his recovery is going well, and he's recently stated he still wants to play every format available upon his return.

"I find myself in an unfamiliar place as I build towards the start of the Vitality Blast this month - from a fitness perspective, I cannot believe how good I feel," said Archer.

"Am I confident things are where I would like them to be ahead of Sussex's opening Twenty20 fixture against Glamorgan on May 26? Absolutely.

"As for Test cricket this summer, I simply haven't thought that far ahead.

"I've not had any prompts from anyone, telling me I'm a one-format player as yet. I still want to play everything.

"But my first task is the Blast and if I don't play that properly, then I won't be able to play Test cricket. So the focus needs to be on the cricket I've got lined up and we will see from there."

Archer's elbow issues first became apparent during England's tour of South Africa in 2019/20, with the bowler suffering a stress reaction and missing the final three Tests.

He returned in summer 2020, but his injuries persisted, meaning he now hasn't represented England since a T20 match in Ahmedabad 14 months ago.

But while the recurring injuries sent Archer on a downward spiral mentally, he's since revealed that his rehab has been successful and he's close to making a return to the sport.

"Having gone into a dark place last summer after the first op, I can see why when people are not on the good side of situations like this, they sometimes have a downward spiral in terms of mental health," he added.

"It's natural for anyone to worry about the future in that kind of situation, but not having to chase a contract gave me the time to rest properly.

"Yes, there have been two surgeries, but honestly, I couldn't have written my rehab comeback any better.

"Now, I just need some game time to be able to put my trust in the elbow. I've not trusted it supporting me for a long period, so it's going to take a little bit of work to do so and bowl at full tilt."

"Having gone into a dark place last summer after the first op, I can see why when people are not on the good side of situations like this, they sometimes have a downward spiral in terms of mental health," he added.

"It's natural for anyone to worry about the future in that kind of situation, but not having to chase a contract gave me the time to rest properly.

"Yes, there have been two surgeries, but honestly, I couldn't have written my rehab comeback any better.

"Now, I just need some game time to be able to put my trust in the elbow. I've not trusted it supporting me for a long period, so it's going to take a little bit of work to do so and bowl at full tilt."

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