Australian off-spinner Nathan Lyon stated that they knew wickets wouldn’t be easy to come by against India on a placid track. The veteran cricketer’s statement came after Australia toiled for day three entirely and picked up three wickets.
Lyon was one of the three wicket-takers on the day as India cut down the deficit significantly after Australia piled up 480 in their first innings. Matthew Kuhnemann was the first to strike, while Todd Murphy and Lyon, whose figures are 37-4-75-1, followed next.
Speaking after the day’s play, the 35-year-old reflected that he bowled better than he did in Indore, where he took 11 wickets. Lyon lauded the bowlers’ efforts to limit the run-scoring of some of India’s best players despite the pitch not playing many tricks.
As quoted by The Age, he stated:
“It’s more of a patient game. When the pitch is like Indore. I felt like I bowled better today than what I did in Indore. And it’s just coming down to doing your basics well enough for long enough. I’m very proud of the guys’ efforts. We knew it was going to be a grinding day, a very similar wicket to what we faced in Pakistan 12 months ago.”
“So for the boys to get the plans and shut down the scoring when you’re bowling to guys like Gill and Virat on this type of surface, it can be challenging.”
The New South Wales spinner was close to striking early on day three as he trapped Shubman Gill leg before wicket (lbw), however, the impact was outside off when Australia challenged the decision. He eventually got the right-hander, but not before he hit 128 runs.
“The way Shubman played was exceptional to be honest” – Nathan Lyon
The Aussie off-spinner heaped praise on Gill for his magnificent injury, but added that the ball to get him was the perfect one. Lyon said:
“I felt the way Shubman played was exceptional to be honest. His defence was there but he was also quite proactive and wanted to look to score. That one I got him on was probably a little bit flatter, a little bit faster than what he was expecting. So, a decent ball on my behalf, but I thought the way he went about it was pretty special.”
India still trail by 191 runs, however, Australia will believe they have enough runs to play with and hope for the wicket to break more soon.