|Men's Ashes: England vs. Australia, Fifth Specsavers Test (Day Two Of Five)|
|England 294 & 9-0: Burns 4 *, Denly 1 *|
|Australia 225: Smith 80, Archer 6-62|
|England leads with 78 runs|
Jofra Archer used 6: 62 to give England the upper hand in the fifth Ashes test, although Australian Steve Smith completed more runs on the second day at The Oval.
The Pace Bowler Archer was assisted by three doors of the left Sam Curran – including two in two balls – when the tourists were ejected for 225.
All along, Smith stayed firm and it was his wicket – lbw to Chris Woakes for 80 – that England and its supporters celebrated most.
It says a lot about Smith's starry summer that this was his lowest score in the series and the inability to reach a century felt like a relative failure.
England fought twice a day. In the morning, they all went from 271-8 to 294, a sum that could not quite keep up on a flat playing field.
However, this should lessen the sharpness of Archer and Curran and the brittleness of the Australian Eyelash – Bar Smith. England returned 20 minutes before the end.
Rory Burns and Joe Denly took the lead 9-0-78. In a dramatic finale on Josh Hazelwood's day, Denly was dropped by Marcus Harris at the gully and Burns toppled over as he was hit by the very last ball.
With a 2-1 deficit, the English have no chance of recapturing the ashes, but are well placed to avoid their first home defeat since 2014 and Australia's first defeat in 18 years.
They have the opportunity to push Australia out of the game, especially if the surface wears off when the tourists start beating again.
Past problems, a look into the future
Prior to this test, English captain Joe Root said his team must use this match as a catalyst for building the next ashes in Australia in 2021-22.
It may be that the pace of Archer and the sluggish momentum of Curran are the pillars of the future English attack, especially when James Anderson and Stuart Broad retire.
They were the standout performers on a sun-drenched day at The Oval as a collectively strong performance in England was marginally affected by three missed catches.
Friday began with the news that Denly's wife had been born overnight and was developing with constant excitement from a crowd that exploded with noise when Smith was sent off.
And if such as Archer and Curran really are the future of England, then this is also the problem of dismissing Smith, who reminds us again that he will remain the biggest obstacle to recovering the ashes in two and a half years.
That's another day, though. For the time being, England has to jump on the chance to end this eventful summer with a victory in series.
Archer and Curran lead England
If Curran England's discovery of 2018 was when he was the man of the series against India, then Archer was the most important new signing from 2019, which not only won the World Cup, but also was the first English bowler who has taken 20 gates debut series since Dominic Cork 1995.
With speeds around 150 km / h, Archer kept asking questions to the batsmen, who were challenged with the accuracy of his complete deliveries and the hostility of the short ones.
David Warner got stuck in retrospect when opening partner Harris advanced to second place and Marnus Labuschagne played over a straight. Just when England went flat after tea, Archer sent Mitchell Marsh to Jack Leach.
By this time, Curran, who played in his first test of the series, had already pinned Matthew Wade lbw, but it was the righties that he really worried by swerving or knocking over the ball.
That was typical of the double strike. First, Tim Paine pushed back, then Pat Cummins was caught by a hitching ducker in front of it.
Smith was the last of four wickets for 37 runs, after which England was stopped by Nathan Lyon and Peter Siddle.
Within eight deliveries, Archer dropped Lyon off a submersible leach, dropped the same man with an ankle, saw Root move as Hazlewood cleared his first ball and pushed Siddle into the ravine where Burns scored a sensational finish ,
Blacksmith the outstanding – again
With the grass flat and the sun shining, nothing seemed to be safer than Smith again torturing England's bowler. Despite some early problems with Curran and the resumption of his captivating series-long fight against Archer, he did just that.
Smith scored 14-2 – Warner's five was his eighth single-digit score in the series – and received support from Labuschagne, but not much else.
He fought as he does; Never quiet and with funny extravagance. He sucked on the bale, banging his feet on the front and back of the same part of the lid, and hit Spinner Leach for six in the middle of the wicket.
Slowly Archer and Curran restricted his hits. He was dropped by a bouncing root on the 66th when he first slipped from the bowling of Curran.
When Curran was replaced, Woakes got one to keep a touch down, and a betrayed Smith was at the door. That was his disappointment, he could barely pull himself off the crease.
That was the beginning of a 37-game between Siddle and Lyon, before Archer had the last word.
"England should win the game from here" – what they said
Former English Captain Michael Vaughan: "Apart from Smith and Labuschagne, that was a nasty blow of Australia.
"I would not be surprised if we had more drama tomorrow, but from this position England should have enough runs to win the game."
Ex-England captain and Surrey director of cricket Alec Stewart: "The magic of Curran and Jofra Archer was extraordinary.
"That was the best thing Curran has done for England, he wants every ball on goal and we keep telling him you can not do that, you have to set up the batsman.
"He has been very good at his lengths and lines today, the best he has done for some time."
The Australian batsman Marnus Labuschagne in conversation with TMS: "We came here today to get a really solid punching performance and obviously we did not do that, but we're still in the competition.
"The intensity has definitely not dropped, it's hard to say that if our game on the field reflects that, but we've come to win the ashes and we really want to do that."
"We do not just want to keep the ashes, we have to be 100% tomorrow and ready to take every opportunity."