Jofra Archer has displayed his ferocious pace on a placid wicket in Lord's. His spell on day 4 was nine overs of intense pace in excess of 90 mph, including one delivery which was measured at 96.1 mph. In one of the spells, his bouncer hit Steve Smith on the side of the neck and he had to retire hurt. Although he resumed batting, Smith was withdrawn from the match on the final day and ruled out of the Leeds Test as he suffered the effects of concussion.
On day 1 of the Leeds Test, under overcast conditions and on a pitch assisting seam movement, Archer showed his awareness and bowled according to the conditions. Archer generated tremendous movement both off the pitch and in the air to trouble the Australians. In between, he bowled pacy bouncers in excess of 90 mph to rattle the batsmen. Only David Warner and Marnus Labuschagne stood tall with fifties but the Australian batting floundered as Archer took 6/45, his maiden five-wicket haul to bowl Australia out for 179.
Speaking after the end of the day's play, Archer remarked that he need not rely on pace all the time to take wickets. "I don't need to run in and bowl 90 mph every spell to get wickets. I've shown that today. There will be times in Test matches you have to focus on hitting your length. There will be times to ramp it up as well but you don't have to go into it every innings. I bowled a few, obviously to let the batter know they are still there but this wasn't a short-ball wicket, it wasn't as hard as Lord's. So it's just get it on the full line and length and it got results today," Archer said.
Incredible Test bowling
Australia were in a good position after the rain break with Warner and Labuschagne tackling the conditions well. They shared a 111-run stand and scored at a rate of over four runs an over. However, Archer dismissed Warner with a 90mph delivery that nipped away and the batsman fell for 61. Warner's dismissal saw Australia lose eight wickets for 43 runs. Warner labelled Archer's spell as the best he had seen in Test cricket.
"That's incredible Test bowling. It's a bit like how (South Africa great) Dale Steyn with the new ball tried to just use the conditions and then sort of ramp it up when they need to. That was world-class bowling at its best. Today was about trying to negate that good ball and not get out to it. I had a lot of luck, I played and missed quite a lot but I kept my bat nice and tight," Warner said.