On the eve of the Australian ODI side’s second game of their tour of Zimbabwe, Nathan Lyon has declared his intention to claim the mantle of the country’s premier spin bowler across all formats of the game.
Lyon returned to the One Day side for the first time in two years on Monday night Australian time, playing only the third ODI of his career. To-date he has played 33 Tests, but believes the reason behind his absence from the shorter formats was down to his inconsistency.
“The big one for me was the consistency. I’ve been working on that, and also my different variations,” Lyon told reporters on Tuesday.
“It is a work in progress, and will continue to be a work in progress throughout my whole career.”
Despite the admission, Lyon has the self-belief to be able to handle the different challenges faced in One Day cricket, and after originally being discovered while playing short form games with South Australia, has declared his intention to become Australia’s go-to spin option for every situation.
“I want to play all three formats for Australia. To achieve that [a return to the One Day side] yesterday, my challenge now is to keep my role in this side and keep performing well and try and take wickets and keep contributing to Australian victories.”
Much has been made of Lyon’s offseason challenge to master some differing spin variations, and he surprised reporters by admitting he had bowled them all during the first match on Monday against Zimbabwe. This was all achieved seemingly without drawing the attention of the cricket world, who with the assistance of replay can be quick to jump on such news.
Lyon even admitted he checked his twitter account post game to see what mentions were made of the variations, only to find he had escaped the scrutiny of his internet followers.
“I saw on Twitter that no one really recognised what happened the other day,” he said of his efforts during the Zimbabwe game, later elaborating that he produced ‘a few different variations that a few people didn’t pick up on’.
While tonight’s game should provide a tougher challenge for the Aussies, Lyon does not expect any favours from the South African side, who will be keen to prove a point following their Test series defeat earlier this year.
“There’s no doubt they are going to target me in the bowling attack, but I am more than happy for that, it is a good opportunity for me to take some wickets, so I’ am looking forward to that opportunity.”