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Jofra Archer not expected to link up with Southern Brave this week

Team hopeful of having the pacer for the last four games as he continues a gradual comeback from elbow surgery

Matt Roller
Matt Roller
Jofra Archer has played twice for Sussex in the last 10 days  •  Getty Images

Jofra Archer has played twice for Sussex in the last 10 days  •  Getty Images

Southern Brave are not expecting to have Jofra Archer available for either of their next two men's Hundred fixtures as he continues a gradual comeback from elbow surgery.
Archer has played twice for Sussex in the last 10 days, first bowling three overs in their Vitality Blast win against Kent and a further six against Oxfordshire in a 50-over warm-up match last Tuesday, but has not linked up with the Southern Brave squad since the start of the Hundred and is not expected to do so this week.
"We're hearing stuff from the medical teams at the ECB and Sussex," James Vince, the Brave's men's captain, said after Tuesday's defeat to Welsh Fire. "I think he's maybe undergoing a jab or something yesterday or today, and then hopefully we might get him for the last four [games] or something.
"It's one of those where I'm staying out of it and leaving it to the experts in that area. Hopefully we do get him because it would be a big boost for us, but if we don't, we've got guys who are capable here."
After the fixture against Kent in the Blast, Archer told BBC Radio Sussex that he was "a month away from where I'd like to be" and that he was "playing with a bit of restriction". He has not been included in the England squad for the first two Tests against India and said in May he was "quite prepared" to miss the series if necessary ahead of the T20 World Cup and Ashes this winter.
An ECB spokesperson said that a further update on Archer's fitness was expected next week but did not confirm whether he had been given a pain-killing injection in the last two days. Archer underwent elbow surgery in May following an aborted comeback from the injury at the start of the English summer.
Vince also revealed that George Garton had missed out on the game against the Fire as he was suffering symptoms of post-viral fatigue after contracting Covid-19. "He was one of the lads that had Covid in that England set-up and he's been a bit low on energy, so the doctor and medical team's advice was that he shouldn't play again today," he said.
The Brave were the pre-tournament favourites for the men's competition but have lost both of their first two games and are already in danger of missing out on the knockout stages, with only the top three teams progressing. Mahela Jayawardene, their head coach, has regularly recovered from sluggish starts while coaching Mumbai Indians in the IPL, and Vince suggested that his recent experience with Hampshire - who squeezed into the Blast's quarter-finals in the final round of group games - meant he was not panicking yet.
"I'm sure we'll realise that we need to start winning soon but I've just been part of a Hampshire side in the Blast that got off to a bit of a slow start and then managed to play some great cricket towards the back end and get some momentum going," he said. "I think this format will be very similar.
"We're aware we need to improve in a few areas but we were much better [on Tuesday] and had our chance to win the game. The next three or four games coming up will be important to make sure we're there or thereabouts come the last few."

Matt Roller is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @mroller98