I ain’t lyin’ about Lyon

Posted: August 12, 2013 in Ranting
Tags: , , ,

I was running a separate blog for cricket-related matters but because I have decided to collapse the number of my blogs once more so the incredible importance of cricket musings is returning here to The Rant.

My rant is about the selection – and non-selection – of Australian spin bowler, Nathan Lyon.

Nathan Lyon

Nathan Lyon

For the first two Tests of the current Ashes series against England, Lyon was overlooked in favour of rookie Ashton Agar. In his debut, Agar became a sensation after scoring a fairytale 98 while batting at number eleven on debut. And that’s all well and good – except he isn’t in there for his batting but as a spin bowler selected ahead of Lyon. What makes that selection more than a bit puzzling is the fact that he was selected while carrying a finger injury which stopped him from gripping the ball in a normal

Ashton Agar

Ashton Agar

off-spinner’s grip. This detracted from his deliveries, with more over-spin than side-spin.

Why select a bowler who cannot hold the ball properly?

In the Second Test, Agar was injured again, this time on the field before he had bowled a ball, pulling something in his hip from memory. He did limp his way into a few overs and the delivery was definitely improved, suggesting the finger injury from the First Test had improved.

When watching Agar bowl, I have no doubt that this rookie definitely has something. He does have appreciable turn and nice flight. But he is only 19 with next to no experience. So why rush this kid into the team when he has barely even learned the basics yet?

The loser in all this has been Nathan Lyon. But his efforts during the Third Test and the current Fourth Test, about to move into its fourth daywhen he finally took his place back in the team show who, for my money, should have been selected as the primary spin bowler in the first place. He has bowled well, taken wickets and was unlucky not to take more.  Might we have seen a different result with Lyon in the side for the first two Tests in the 2013 Ashes series?

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