Australia vs India, 2nd Test: 5 talking points from Day 3
- India needs to take some quick wickets on Day 4 to restrict Australia from setting a huge fourth inning target.
#3. Nathan Lyon's off-spin proves vital for Australia
Nathan Lyon is more or less the best off-spinner among presently active bowlers, and his efforts on the pitch secure the point with much grace.
Lyon was wicketless on Day 2, but he ended the drought soon after the game began earlier today, by sending Rahane packing in the fourth ball. After a brief hiatus which saw Vihari and Kohli being cleaned up by Hazlewood and Cummins respectively, Lyon then made a comeback and wiped out the rest of the squad, pocketing the wickets of Shami, Ishant, Pant, and Bumrah in a space of just 31 runs.
Nathan Lyon's effectiveness with the ball will cast more than a slight shadow of doubt on Kohli's mind, on whether he missed a trick by not including one of his own in the lineup. Jadeja could have replaced the injured Ashwin, but the green surface on Perth had forced India to field four pacers, using Vihari as their spin back up.
In their return with the ball, the Indian pacers again failed to produce the much-needed breaks, while Vihari came in whenever he could and decelerated the hosts' scoring rate. How effective will Lyon be, when India chases a target on Days 4 and 5, is all that remains to be seen.