England’s bid to level the Ashes at Headingley was hampered by rain and bad light at Headingley as Australia’s batsmen faced just 18 overs in the first two sessions of the third Test.

The hosts, 1-0 down in the five-match series, had inserted their opponents under gloomy skies after winning the toss in Leeds, yet play was delayed for 80 minutes due to showers, and only four overs were possible before the inclement weather returned.

During that time, however, Jofra Archer made the early breakthrough by drawing the edge of the recalled Marcus Harris (8), whose opening partner David Warner lived a charmed life, particularly against the impressive Stuart Broad.

Play resumed at 14:00 local time (13:00 GMT) and Broad eventually got his reward, Usman Khawaja (8) given out following England’s review when his bat brushed the ball en route to wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow’s gloves.

The players were forced off once more due to further rain and only 3.1 overs had been bowled when proceedings were halted again, this time due to bad light.

Warner, who was unbeaten on 26 having been out for single figures in each of his previous four innings in the series, appeared only too happy to depart, though England’s players were less impressed as he and Marnus Labuschagne (7 not out) walked off while the umpires checked the light.

The latest interruption meant tea was taken at 16:10 on a frustrating opening day.