5 reasons why Nathan Lyon is at par with R Ashwin
With 22 wickets in two Tests, Nathan Lyon played the architect's role to ensure Australia drew the Test series with Bangladesh. In four innings, Lyon produced three five wicket hauls and stamped his identity as Australia's lead spinner.
This performance in Bangladesh has highlighted the improvement in Lyon's bowling and he has become a spinner for all conditions.
Unfortunately, the Australian spinner rarely comes in the limelight and his achievements go unnoticed. He is a highly underrated bowler in world cricket.
The Aussie off-spinner's sterling performances have pushed him to the top and currently, he is as good as R Ashwin, arguably the best off-spinner of this era.Here are five reasons that prove that Lyon is at par with R Ashwin.
#5. Overall statistics
Lyon has been a part of Australia's Test unit since 2011. He is one of the many spinners which Australia experimented with in the post-Warne era and now it seems that with his emergence, this experimentation finally has come to an end.
So far, the off-spinner has featured in 69 Tests and has 269 wickets under his belt. In the spin department, only Warne has more wickets for Australia in Tests. Lyon's average of 31.83 may not look that impressive but he has played most of his cricket in conditions that are not spin friendly (17 Tests in Asia).
Also, his strike rate of 60.8 is very effective. His strike rate is similar to other successful non-Asian spinners such as G Swann (60.1), Warne (57.4) and Jim Laker (62.3). Interestingly, Rnagana Herath, one of the best spinners of this generation has a strike rate of 60.3.
The Aussie spinner has 12 five-wicket hauls and two ten-wicket hauls in Test cricket and these numbers speak highly about his abilities and skills. These overall statistics slot Lyon among the top spinners in the international cricket and the fact that he plays most of his cricket on unhelpful surfaces makes him one of the best.