DHARAMSALA, India, (Reuters) – Australia off-spinner Nathan Lyon said he made use of his biggest weapon — bounce — as he took four final-session wickets to halt India’s progress in the fourth and final test yesterday.
After the first three tests were played on low and slow tracks at Pune, Bengaluru and Ranchi, the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association produced a wicket which offered significant bounce and turn to keep both the slow and fast bowlers happy.
In reply to Australia’s first innings total of 300, India looked steady on 157-2 when Lyon intervened to change the complexion of the contest.
“After bowling a couple of overs on it before lunch, I sat down and thought about what it is similar to and it was closer to a home wicket,” Lyon said after claiming 4-67.
“…bounce is my biggest weapon where I am getting guys caught at bat-pad and slips.
“I went back to knowing how I bowl, which is probably the best way I should bowl — just backing my skill and enjoying the challenge of playing the best side in the world in their home conditions.”
Lyon has been rather subdued in the series but joins spin partner Steve O’Keefe and Indian Ravichandran Ashwin as the joint second-highest wicket-taker (18), behind local favourite Ravindra Jadeja (22).
Lyon said he did not care how many wickets he got as long as Australia claimed a decisive victory.
“Happy to go out there and play cricket for Australia and bowl well in partnerships,” the 29-year-old said.
“I’m not worried about personal success. It’s about going out there and taking 20 wickets as a bowling unit.
“If that means Steve O’Keefe comes out and takes 10 wickets in the second innings, I’m more than happy for him. Or if it’s Pat Cummins. I’m not one for personal success.
“It’s all about the team for me. If we can come out and bowl well tomorrow morning, put pressure on India and hopefully take four wickets and get batting and bat big, that’s what I’m worried about.”