Archer-inspired England fight back to bowl out Australia on day one at Headingley
England battled back with the ball on a weather-interrupted first day of the third Ashes Test to leave Australia in trouble at Headingley.
The hosts won the toss and opted to put Australia in to bat, but a delayed start and continued stoppages thereafter looked to have handed the tourists the initiative.
At one stage, the partnership of David Warner and Marnus Labuschagne seemingly put Australia in the driving seat as England were wasteful in attack as they struggled to find any rhythm.
However, a devastating final session and another inspired Jofra Archer display saw Australia lose their last eight wickets for 43 runs, finishing 179 all out.
Having failed to impress in the opening two Tests, opener Cameron Bancroft was dropped from the Australia line-up and replaced by Marcus Harris, who unfortunately didn’t fare much better, falling to man of the hour Archer for eight runs in just the fourth over.
Following his eventful debut at Lord’s last week, all eyes were on Archer once again as his brilliant delivery wowed the Yorkshire crowd to give England an early breakthrough.
Harris and Australia would be left cursing their luck as his dismissal proved the be the last action of the truncated morning session as the heavens opened once more.
Following an extended lunch break to allow the adverse weather to pass, Australia lost another top order batsman having something of an indifferent series in Usman Khawaja, also going for eight after flicking one from Broad down leg side into the hands of Jonny Bairstow.
The conditions disrupted much of the afternoon, with the tourists creeping up to 39-2 before the covers came back on.
When the players eventually returned after approximately an hour, fans inside the ground were again left frustrated just three overs later as the umpires brought out the light metre and hauled the players off again due to bad light.
Australia looked to have benefitted from the break initially as Warner and Labuschagne dug in, bringing up a 111-run partnership before the former was dismissed by Archer for 61.
Warner, who had also been struggling with the bat so far, finally found some form to eclipse the mere 18 runs he amassed in total across his previous four innings of the series.
Stuart Broad, who had taken three of those Warner wickets thought he’d foiled his nemesis once more but a review rightly overturned the umpire’s call.
The reprieve only proved temporary however, as Archer stepped up once again to take out the danger man.
Labuschagne also brought up his half century but it was hardly a moment the tourists could celebrate as Travis Head and Matthew Wade both went for a duck either side of their teammate’s milestone score.
Head was left rooted as Broad’s excellent delivery clipped his off stump to send the bails flying, while Wade went after attempting to play Archer’s delivery into the body.
In another stroke of bad luck, the ball deflected off Wade’s pad and rolled agonisingly onto leg stump bumping off the bail.
Australia slipped from 136-2 to 139-5 in the space of just fifteen balls.
Captain Tim Paine came in to try and stem the flow but was eventually given lbw off the bowling of Chris Woakes after an England review.
Archer took his fourth wicket of the day removing James Pattinson to leave Australia seven down and Pat Cummins soon followed as Archer claimed his first Five-wicket haul for England.
Labuschgne’s impressive innings then came to an end when Ben Stokes’ full toss sent him on his way lbw for 74.
But the final word belonged to Archer as he removed Nathan Lyon in the final over of the day, ending with figures of 6-45 and crucially, giving England to opportunity to start the day with the bat when the two teams resume on Friday.
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