Lyon adds spin to sledging fire, says will handle England all by himself
Australia’s Nathan Lyon is confident he has the tools to spin England out in the second test in Adelaide and will not need much help from team mates rolling over a few part-time overs.cricket Updated: Nov 29, 2013 00:39 IST
Australia’s Nathan Lyon is confident he has the tools to spin England out in the second test in Adelaide and will not need much help from team mates rolling over a few part-time overs.
Lyon captured key wickets in Australia's 381-run victory over the tourists in the first test but question marks remain over whether the 26-year-old has the game to close out a victory.
Some of the doubt stems from last year's test series against South Africa when Australia needed six wickets on the last day at Adelaide Oval to win on a deteriorating pitch.
Lyon took only one wicket that day, with paceman Peter Siddle taking the leading role with three wickets but South Africa, led by test debutant Faf du Plessis, held on to save the game before routing Australia in Perth to win the series.
"I've learnt a fair amount playing a few test matches down there," Lyon told reporters on Thursday.
"I've learnt a fair amount about my game and what I need to do and what I need to do to get better.
"Fingers crossed there's a little bit more spin down there and we'll see how we go."
Lyon is famous for having worked as a curator at Adelaide Oval in 2010 before being spotted by local coach Darren Berry and completing a remarkable rise to the test team the following year.
The offspinner took five wickets on debut against Sri Lanka and has 89 wickets from 26 test matches at a respectable average of 32.44.
He has often had a lukewarm reception from Australia's selectors, however, who left him out of the opening two tests of the northern Ashes series in favour of an untried teenager in Ashton Agar.
Lyon will head into the second test with his status as Australia's number one spinner in little doubt, however, though may have some part-time support from Steve Smith or captain Michael Clarke.
"In saying that if the bowling group does our job they (part-time spinners) won't have to bowl," he said.
"I'm more than happy to take on the responsibility of being the number one spinner and hopefully get a few overs under my belt."
Much has been made of the sledging on the field at the Gabba and Lyon was arm-in-arms with his team mates when he said the hosts would not be curbing the aggression at Adelaide Oval.
"We're not expecting anyone to roll over. We know the quality of the England cricket side," Lyon said.
"We're going to have to stand up ... and start that fight again.
"That's the way Australia play their best cricket.
"We know where the line is and we don't step over it ... We're going to continue to play aggressive, hard cricket."