AAP Other sport

Woakes hopeful Archer has Smith sussed

By AAP Newswire

Chris Woakes is hopeful Jofra Archer has worked out Steve Smith after the England debutant produced a stunning spell of fast bowling on day four of the second Ashes Test.

Archer reached speeds of up to 154 km/h in an eight-over stint after lunch and left Smith with a badly bruised left arm before forcing him off the field temporarily after hitting him in the neck with a brute of a delivery.

Smith returned to the crease on 80 and added 12 more runs before Woakes trapped him lbw as Australia were bowled out for 250 in response to England's 258.

"We've tried to test his technique in every way possible," Woakes said.

"We're trying different plans.

"We tried bowling outside off stump, we tried bowling straight, and then I suppose it's taken something special from Jofra to maybe rattle him a little bit."

England lead by 104 runs going into the last day after closing on 4-96 with all three results possible on what is forecast to be a warm and sunny day in London.

"It's a great game to be a part of, when I envisaged Test and Ashes cricket as a child, this is what I envisaged it being like," Woakes said.

"It took a serious spell of bowling from Jofra to get Steve out of his bubble, because so far in this series he's been incredible.

"It was serious pace. I'm sure it was incredible to watch.

"Thankfully having seen Steve on the balcony, he's obviously okay which is good news.

"For Steve to come back out, having been hit the way he was, that takes some courage and character.

"You don't want to see somebody get hurt and leave the field, you want to get them out and thankfully we managed to do that in the end."

Australia coach Justin Langer said he expects England to target Smith with the short ball for the rest of the series but backed his star player to deal with what is thrown at him.

"When you get hit, it's always in the back of your mind, no doubt," Langer said.

"Any batsman who tells you it's not is a liar.

"But he's also the sort of person who will do everything from now until the next time he bats, whether it's mentally visualising or practising to be right.

"He loves batting, we saw that masterclass he did. He just loves batting and nobody is going to stop him batting.

"He'll work it out and hopefully he'll get back into it."