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Axar, Ashwin could easily bat in top 6 anywhere in the world: Nathan Lyon

Last updated on 18 Feb 2023 | 03:08 PM
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Axar, Ashwin could easily bat in top 6 anywhere in the world: Nathan Lyon

The Indian duo added 114 for the eighth wicket to dig their side out of trouble

Nathan Lyon picked up a five-wicket haul on Day Two of the second Test against India in Delhi to help his side take a one-run lead. It was Axar Patel (74) and Ravichandran Ashwin (37) who put on 114 for the eighth wicket to bring India back into the game after they found themselves in a spot of bother.

Axar has continued his impressive form with the bat after scoring a vital 84 in Nagpur that saw India win by an innings and 132 runs. Lyon reckons Axar and Ashwin could bat in the top six for any team, anywhere in the world.

“They are not lower order – Axar, Ash could easily bat in top 6 anywhere in the world, they are not lower order, India have long top order,” Lyon told the media after the day's play.

“Very happy with the five-for, we have got the whole eye in the test match, still a lot more work to do.”

Lyon also noted that there was a lot more bounce in Delhi compared to Nagpur, which is something he is looking to exploit. “There was a lot more bounce in Delhi as compared to Nagpur," the off-spinner observed.

“Little bit of bounce is something I like to exploit here, I love playing cricket here in the subcontinent. It is a challenge to bowl here bowling at some world-class superstars."

Right decision was made

While applauding the umpires, Lyon also said that the decision to give Virat Kohli out was the right decision. On-field umpire Nitin Menon had adjudged Kohli leg-before, but the former skipper immediately took the review as he thought he had put some bat it. The replays did not suggest any evidence that Kohli had indeed hit it before the ball crashed into his pads and as a result, third umpire Richard Illingworth did not overturn the on-field decision, much to the dismay of Kohli.

Lyon though thinks otherwise.  "I think the right decision was made. No doubt Virat would be saying that (he hit it) and it probably should have gone his way. Hats off to the umpires. It's tough in these conditions. We bowlers are trying to put pressure on them to get the decision in our favour. In the end, the decision was right," the off-spinner on Star Sports after the close of the second day's play.

This was Lyon's fourth fifer in Tests in India - the most outside Australia (9). Australia in their second innings have taken a 62-run lead and have nine wickets in hand. Travis Head (39*), who opened the innings in the absence of the concussed David Warner, played has played an excellent counter-attacking innings. He has put on 38 off just 37 deliveries with Marnus Labuschagne (16*) after losing Usman Khawaja (6) early.

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