Australia will have every reason to be proud of their Test team this summer, according to ace spinner Nathan Lyon.
After warming up for the series against India with a match-winning performance for NSW against WA at Optus Stadium, the site of the second Test, the world’s best spinner predicted the traumatic year should be overshadowed by positive returns on the field this summer.
“We want to make Australia proud and the only way we will do that is by playing good competitive cricket and winning some games,” Lyon said.
“If we can get back to the basics, and do the basics better than India do, hopefully results will go our way.
“As always, we will play to win and we will play positive, competitive cricket and have some fun doing it.
“It is a great game to play and there is nothing better than representing your country.”
Lyon will enter the India series in excellent form after claiming 3-34 and 4-86 this week to help set up NSW’s 104 run win.
Lyon now has 318 Test wickets, the most by any straight-arm off-spinner, and should pass Bob Willis (325) and Allan Donald (330) this summer while Dennis Lillee’s mark of 355 is also within reach.
He is eager to return to Adelaide, where he bowled Australia to victory over India in the Phil Hughes match four years ago, before taking part in the historic maiden Test at Burswood this month.
Lyon was impressed by the pitch, which he said replicated many of the WACA Ground’s traditional features.
A curator at Adelaide Oval himself before his Test career took off, Lyon had a long talk with curator Brett Sipworth before play yesterday and rated the pitch as a superb surface for high-level cricket.
“The wicket for this game was absolutely fantastic,” he said.
“There is a bit in it for everyone and if you are good enough you will find something in it.
“If you put the ball in the right spot often enough you got some reward but if you were good enough, as Shaun Marsh and Marcus Stoinis were for WA and Kurtis Patterson and Moises (Henriques) and young Jack Edwards showed for NSW, you could get runs.
“It is very similar to the WACA.
“I loved bowling at the WACA because of the bounce but I certainly got some bounce here.
“It is different to the other drop-ins because of its different clay content and soil composition but this was brilliant.”
WA coach Adam Voges was more cautious and said the Test match was unlikely to last five days if a similar pitch was produced this month.
“It is not dissimilar to the WACA but it cracked more and had more sideways movement,” he said.
“I don’t think a Test match will go five days on a wicket like that.”