In the strongest sign yet that Matthew Renshaw will receive an Ashes reprieve, Test offspinner Nathan Lyon says the battling opener has the backing of the Australian team's inner sanctum ahead of next week's series opener.
Renshaw appeared under enormous pressure from Western Australia's Cameron Bancroft to retain his spot for the Ashes, starting on November 23 at the Gabba, after a double failure in Queensland's six-wicket Sheffield Shield loss to NSW in Brisbane.
He has 70 Shield runs this summer at an average of 11.66.
In contrast, Bancroft has amassed 442 runs at 110.50 after falling for 17 in WA's Shield clash with South Australia in Perth.
But as national selectors gathered just metres away at Allan Border Field to pick their squad on Wednesday, NSW's Lyon tipped Renshaw to turn his form around in the Ashes thanks to support from within.
"Playing for Australia, you are going to come under scrutiny from the media and the public," Lyon said of the speculation swirling around Renshaw.
"But if you are in the inner sanctum and have the support - which he does - then you can usually get out of that head space and perform well.
"The media can write what they want, the public can think what they want but, if you have positive energy around the team - which there is already - I know there will be support for everyone (in the Test team)."
It is believed selectors will stick with Renshaw at the top of the order and opt for Bancroft at No.6, with NSW's Peter Nevill to be recalled as wicketkeeper on Friday when they finally unveil their team.
Lyon said he didn't think Renshaw's recent rotten run would be a problem heading into an Ashes series.
"Last Test Matt played in Australia, he got 180," Lyon said of Renshaw's 184 - his sole ton in 10 Tests - against Pakistan in January in Sydney.
"I am not a selector but I am a big fan of Matt - he is a class batsman.
"It can be difficult (out of form ahead of Ashes) but, if you have the support of the inner sanctum and coaching staff - and he does - that's the most important part."
In another indication Renshaw might get an Ashes nod, the left-hander on Wednesday was invited to face all four Australian quicks in a testing net session at Allan Border Field observed by coach Darren Lehmann.
Lyon said it was an ideal pre-Ashes tune-up for Renshaw after notching just 16 and one for Queensland in their first Shield loss of the season.
"But there are going to be times in this series when everyone is going to be placed under pressure - it is how you bounce back," Lyon said.
"You have to be resilient and put the Poms under pressure, make them feel uncomfortable as possible - it's a massive challenge and I can't wait."