Jofra Archer has revealed he has received racist abuse on social media during his spell in isolation following the biosecurity breach ahead of the second Test against West Indies at Old Trafford as he opened up on how difficult the last week has been for him.
Archer broke protocol when he opted to drive back to his flat in Hove last Tuesday instead of heading straight from the Ageas Bowl to Old Trafford under the strict guidelines laid down for this series. He was forced to miss the second Test then was handed a fine and written warning by the ECB.
In his Daily Mail column he talked about the impact of social media and the "fickle" nature of how a sportsman can be a hero one minute and heavily criticised the next. He said he understood that was the nature of playing international sport, but revealed he had discussed some of the abuse he has received with the ECB.
"Some of the abuse I have taken over the past few days on Instagram has been racist and I have decided that enough is enough," Archer said. "Since Wilfried Zaha, the Crystal Palace footballer, was abused by a 12-year-old online I drew a line and I will not allow anything to pass, so I have forwarded on my complaints to the ECB and that will go through the correct process.
"No one is going to be amazing all the time. Sometimes I feel it's not a fair world - really and truly. Over the last few days, I have unfollowed and muted a lot of social media profiles to get away from it. I won't be going back on it. I find it unnecessary noise. Take two wickets and everyone is back on the bandwagon again. It's a fickle, fickle world we live in."
Archer twice tested negative for Covid-19 during his five days in isolation and is eligible for selection for the final Test starting on Friday, but said he struggled to bowl in the nets when he was given dispensation to leave his room at the on-site hotel.
"I found I was struggling for motivation in the circumstances when it came to returning to bowling in the nets. When I walked outside of my room for the first time since being placed into self-isolation for breaking the Covid-19 protocols, I heard the cameras clicking with every single step I took," he said. "The whole spectacle made me feel uneasy. I know what I did was an error of judgement and I have suffered the consequences of that. I haven't committed a crime and I want to start feeling myself again.
"I spoke briefly to the doctor about how I'm feeling and also to Ben Stokes on Monday night. Ben tried to advise me on how to deal with being in the spotlight of international sport. He vowed to back me and support me. Now, I need to be 100 percent mentally right so that I can throw myself into my cricket this week."