Darren Gough – My role in Jofra Archer’s Headingley success and how England can solve their Ashes batting crisis

DANGER MAN: England's Jofra Archer (centre) celebrates taking the wicket of Australia's Marcus Harris on day one at Headingley. Picture: Mike Egerton/PA
DANGER MAN: England's Jofra Archer (centre) celebrates taking the wicket of Australia's Marcus Harris on day one at Headingley. Picture: Mike Egerton/PA
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JOFRA ARCHER bowled beautifully at Headingley on Thursday and I am going to take a little bit of responsibility for it.

I spoke to Ed Smith and Ashley Giles beforehand and said that he had to bowl up the hill. They were a bit unsure about it but he bowled upfield and got six-fer, so Archer owes me a pint!

England's Jofra Archer: Took Darren Gough's advice.

England's Jofra Archer: Took Darren Gough's advice.

The analysts’ view of Archer’s bowling was hilarious. They said: ‘well, he did not bowl as quick as he did at Lord’s, he must be tired.’ Absolute rubbish.

On a green pitch, he did not need to try and bowl too quick. He put the ball in the right areas and it moved around. It was a top display. If anyone doubted his ability, there is no doubting it now.

When told he would be bowling up the hill at Leeds, Archer, as a young bowler, was probably thinking: ‘Why is that?’ But with his action and the way he bowls and the rhythm he needs, he does not need much effort.

Up the hill was always going to be the end. That is the one I bowled at and it was so pleasing to see Archer get the rewards doing that.

I spoke to Ed Smith and Ashley Giles beforehand and said that he had to bowl up the hill. They were a bit unsure about it but he bowled upfield and got six-fer, so Archer owes me a pint!

Darren Gough

A lot of people are put off because the run down the hill is not as big as it used to be as a bit has been cut out, but it is still awkward and you can get carried away and lose your rhythm.

Too many analysts said that he did not follow through as much on Thursday and was a bit jaded. No chance.

He has got the game for all conditions. He is such a relaxed character and messes around in warm-ups bowling left-arm leg-spin and suddenly, he will then turn it on when he has to.

He has changed the dynamics of the England team and has almost become the leader of the attack in his second Test.

BAD DAY: England captain Joe Root reacts after being dismissed for 0 during day two against Australia at Headingley. Picture: Stu Forster/Getty Images

BAD DAY: England captain Joe Root reacts after being dismissed for 0 during day two against Australia at Headingley. Picture: Stu Forster/Getty Images

We have seen him bowl at 90 miles per hour in one game and use his cricketing intelligence bowling up the hill in the next.

It will be up to Joe Root to manage him as if the pitch is flat and you need a wicket, you will turn to him as you will when it seams.

We are going to have to manage his workload, but we have found ourselves an absolute beauty.

I was speaking to a few Australians in Leeds about this and they are now more worried about the Ashes when it is staged Down Under. England have not won a Test in Australia for a while and now we have a bowler who is going to trouble Aussie batsmen there.

BE GONE WITH YOU: Australia's Josh Hazlewood celebrates taking the wicket of England's Jonny Bairstow at Headingley on Friday. Picture: Tim Goode/PA

BE GONE WITH YOU: Australia's Josh Hazlewood celebrates taking the wicket of England's Jonny Bairstow at Headingley on Friday. Picture: Tim Goode/PA

If we get Ollie Stone and Mark Wood in as well, we will have three bowlers who can bowl a really heavy ball who suit Australian cricket, which is exciting. We even have Jamie Overton as well, who can bowl quick.

Stuart Broad and Jimmy Anderson remain superb bowlers but in Australia, they have struggled to bowl out the Aussies. Adding Archer and Stone to Broad and Chris Woakes and it’s a proper bowling attack.

If you were Archer, you would have been so disappointed at events on Friday.

It was such a good day to bat – as the Aussies have showed. Our top-order was just not good enough, the shots were so poor and it was very difficult to watch.

We played at wide deliveries and some of the shots were shocking.

Joe Root got a good delivery, but the problem for him is that, batting at three, he seems to be in after five or six overs in every game and we are risking losing our leading batsman time after time and it really bothers me.

We see Steve Smith and Virat Kohli bat at four. Root should be batting at four, full stop.

We changed the batting order again with Stokes at five, Bairstow at six and Buttler at seven and it seems to be a bit like the Yorkshire batting line-up at the minute with the swapping and changing and they are not quite sure of the best order.

Saying that, Australia’s bowling performance as a team was far better than ours, even with Archer getting six-fer. They were excellent, created pressure and bowled in the right areas and gave us no boundary balls.

I know it is a bit harsh, but when you look at the Aussies’ score of 179, it was probably fifty too many when you look at the conditions we bowled in compared to Australia. If we did not have the bad spell from Woakes and Stokes, 120 would have realistically been a total to get them out for.