Nathan Lyon stunned the cricket world on Thursday with career best Sheffield Shield figures in NSW clash with Victoria.
Lyon admitted that he was exhausted at the end of an exhausting Test summer after returning with a bang to the SCG to snare the best figures of his career in the Sheffield Shield.
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Lyon finished 6-21 from 16 overs on day two of the star-studded clash, after contributing to a stunning 8-48 collapse that led to NSW throwing Victoria for 200.
The off-spinner survived 14 balls as a night watchman when the Blues reached 1-22 on stumps on Wednesday, having cut Victoria’s lead to 13 runs when play ended late at 7pm (AEDT) due to rain delays.
The draw will not bring Lyon closer to its 400th Test scalp, which remains one wicket away, nor any consolation after its 100th Test marked Australia’s decisive loss to India.
But it underscored the 33-year-old’s ability to quickly change the course of a match, something that didn’t happen during his high-stakes milestone Test in Gabba.
“It has been a pretty emotional week. Especially if you have family there, you throw up the challenge of getting them all up there with the border fences,” Lyon told AAP.
“A very tiring week … I had a few weeks off after the Gabba Test and a pretty hectic summer.
“It was pretty nice to come home and have some downtime, live a normal life … get away from cricket.”
Looks like a solid appetite for Nathan Lyon
– James Godby (@jiklikescricket) February 18, 2021
Nathan Lyon’s heartbreak over the loss of India
Lyon, opting for family time with his two daughters ahead of a Big Bash League spell with Sydney Sixers, noted that India beat its side in Brisbane.
“The best thing about cricket is that you can learn from it every day … we have to keep learning as a young Australian cricket team,” he said.
The tweaker caused Victoria to lose all the momentum generated by former Test batsman Nic Maddinson’s blistering blow of 77, who spanned 80 balls and just 116 minutes.
“That’s why he’s the GOAT. He’s pretty good,” Victoria captain Peter Handscomb said of Lyon.
Lyon removed Matt Short, Will Sutherland, James Pattinson, Mitchell Perry and Jon Holland in quick succession, having previously found Marcus Harris’ lead to claim the first wicket to fall on Thursday.
“It was nice to get out of here and find a nice rhythm,” said Lyon.
“It happened pretty quickly.
“But that can happen on wickets like this. It’s a pretty good game between bat and ball, so a lot better than the Test wicket.”
Handscomb reached 24 and put his side in the box seat to build a lead in the first innings that exceeded 35 runs, before his dismissal from Trent Copeland caused a dramatic slump.
Jake Fraser-McGurk was next, the victim of a sensational direct hit from Josh Hazlewood mid-match.
Fraser-McGurk was exhausted at the end of the non-attacker after thinking about a quick single before Hazlewood rewrote the magic trick he performed at the SCG test this year.
Sean Abbott, who previously ended Maddinson’s whirlwind knockout, fired off Seb Gotch before Lyon worsened Victoria’s woes.
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