When Nathan Lyon enters the field to play in the Lord’s Ashes Test on Wednesday
When Nathan Lyon enters the field to play in the Lord’s Ashes Test on Wednesday (June 28), he will join a select group of cricketers. Only five cricketers, including Alastair Cook, Allan Border, Mark Waugh, Sunil Gavaskar, and Brendon McCullum, have ever played 100 consecutive Test matches. It speaks volumes about a player’s performance, reliability and flawless physical condition.
When Lyon was benched from the first Test of the Ashes at Trent Bridge in favour of left-arm spinner Ashton Agar, he seemed unlikely to do what he has now. Lyon, who is only five wickets away from reaching the 500-wicket plateau and is the eighth-highest wicket-taker in Test history, has an apparent memory of the circumstances surrounding his expulsion.
Lyon admitted, “I recall fairly clearly that day at Trent Bridge when I was told I wasn’t playing. “I only remember sitting on the end of Brad Haddin’s bed and talking about my thought of having a solid Test match only a few weeks earlier in Delhi.
“Being discarded is a strange experience, especially for a young cricketer. Young international professionals frequently believe their careers are over and wonder what to do next. Do you still have my family’s love? And anything else. These are the ideas that cross your mind. It wasn’t until Brad said, “Mate, all you have to do is talk to the selectors, find out the reason, and then go out and prove them wrong,” that the situation changed. I accomplished it, and I’m happy with how I handled it.
Lyon accompanied Michael Clarke during every practice session in the weeks that followed Trent Bridge’s closure because the selectors had said he couldn’t bowl effectively against right-handers. “All I wanted to do was bowl to right-handers, and the rest of the batters were getting the shits on because they wanted to face Graeme Swann.”It was excellent advice at the time, allowing me to attempt to improve and figure out how to improve. It is a part of my journey. It has been a fantastic journey.
Four years after a disappointing final-day performance at Headingley, which Lyon was incidentally reminded of by umpire Marais Erasmus in the closing stages of Australia’s dramatic victory at Edgbaston last week, Lyon’s continued excellence and mental toughness are further attested by his central role in Australia’s counter of England’s uber “Bazball” approach.
“Until Marais, the umpire, said, “This is similar to Headingley, isn’t it?” I had yet to give Headingley 2019 much thought. Thank you, Marais; that helps me relax a little bit,” Lyon remarked. “However, Pat [Cummins] and I didn’t discuss it. Pat was remarkably composed.
We cheer each other up, make each other smile, and relax a bit whenever we bowlers go to bat. Pat had a significant impact on my life. But thank you, Marais; until then, I had yet to consider Headingley. Still required are roughly 30.
Despite squeaking home with a 1-0 series lead, Lyon did acknowledge that Australia was not at their best in the opening Test and that much work remained if they were to stave off England’s aggressive game plans successfully.
It’s a brand of cricket that is incredibly violent. Thus, baseball is unique and exciting. Hats off to them because they’ve been playing great brand-new cricket, and to be honest with you, I think we just always need to concentrate on what we’re doing, as I’ve stated many times before,” said Lyon.
“Frankly, I don’t believe we are at our best in Edgbaston. Since tomorrow will be a top-up, some guys won’t come and will try to rest up mentally and prepare for Wednesday. However, we have a lot of improvements to make if we want to keep competing well and play each Test match to win. We had an excellent team discussion today, and each individual had the chance to work on the skills. It’s going to be difficult. We are conscious of our love for performing at Lord’s. It is the home of cricket, which puts it on par with Adelaide, but we’ll go out and watch it and enjoy it.
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