Lyon must change tactics

Martin Smith February 27, 2013, 12:27 pm

Nathan Lyon’s match figures of 4 for 244 in the first Test didn’t make for pretty reading.

The Aussie off‐spinner was the major casualty as a cyclonic MS Dhoni ripped through Chennai on his way to a memorable double century.

Despite his expensive figures, Lyon will be in the XI for the second Test starting on Saturday.

Australia’s selectors will have to swallow their pride and opt for more spin in Hyderabad, with Xavier Doherty and possibly Glenn Maxwell to come into consideration.

As for the incumbent spinner, he has just three days to regain his confidence and re‐think his plan of attack.

A clue to where Lyon went wrong in Chennai can be found in the scoring zones of India’s batsmen.

Of the 215 runs Lyon conceded in India’s first innings, 42 were behind square on the leg side. While that doesn’t sound like many, the 30 singles and six twos scored in that area reveal the root of the problem.

It shows that Lyon often bowled far too straight, angling the ball into India’s right‐handers and spinning it even further towards the leg side.

With Michael Clarke rarely employing a fielder in the ring at square leg, the angle Lyon bowled allowed India’s batsmen to simply help the ball around the corner for a pressure‐relieving single.

If these tactics continue in Hyderabad, Lyon’s fortunes will be just as grim as they were in the first Test.

In addition to employing a single‐saving fielder at square leg, Lyon needs to change his approach at the crease.

Bowling a much wider line outside off stump will force India’s batsmen to reach for the ball and either play against the spin through the off side or play across the line. Bowling well wide of the stumps will also bring the footmarks into play, creating more doubt in the batsman’s mind.

India’s boundary‐hungry batsmen hate to be tied down and facing this wide line will force them to chance their arm to feel bat on ball.

Bowling a wider line brings with it’s own risks; Lyon conceded eight boundaries and a massive six through cover and mid‐off in Chennai. But the more often India’s batsmen are forced to reach outside off stump and play against the spin, the more likely they are to make a mistake.

Lyon needs to show some patience, bowl a wide line and let the surface do the rest.

Another option Lyon should adopt is changing the angle completely and bowling outside off stump from around the wicket. Lyon barely bowled around the wicket to the right‐handers in Chennai, which was extraordinary given the number of overs he bowled and the punishment he received.

There is no doubt Lyon faces a tough job on this tour against batsmen who treat spin bowlers with disdain. But with a slight re‐think of tactics, some help from his skipper and support from his fellow spinners, he can put in an improved performance in Hyderabad.

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  1. Daggers01:26pm Wednesday 27th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    Bad bowling & bad field placement = bad captaincy. C'mon Clarkey! Thought you were supposed to be good.

  2. david01:47pm Wednesday 27th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    meebe he should follow the example of paedophile catholid priests & deliver a line & length right between the stumps - goo d job the head of the Mafia ( pope ) resigned one less perveted priest

  3. David02:28pm Wednesday 27th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    what did anyone expect?? Below average bowler, was never going to be any different. Not even Warne had success in India, just get another quick, cant do a lot worse. There are good bowlers around, Lyon is useless unfortunately.

  4. Ajit02:39pm Wednesday 27th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    Lyon is not a best bowler, he is just an avreage bowler. he thinks he is great. There are many better bowlers. Selectors should look at past spinners and they will find better alternative but one thing is for sure, Lyon went into history books to give maximum runs 244 in one inning

  5. Tim02:48pm Wednesday 27th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    lyons gotta go plain n simple , time for warnie to step up n work with our young spinners n maybe time for young zampa

  6. Devi03:17pm Wednesday 27th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse


  7. Robert03:22pm Wednesday 27th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    A quick look at any video/film of Jim Laker should put him on how to bowl around the wicket. similarly a film of Lance Gibbs for bowling over the wicket.

  8. Jeff03:30pm Wednesday 27th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    Saw some clips of Dhoni's innings - what a joke - only possible on a rolled mud pitch! come on Aussies, you cant' let that #$%$ happen again. Hyderabad will be bad again, maybe Hyper-bad rolled mud again - or maybe cow-poo.

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  9. John04:02pm Wednesday 27th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    Is Lyons the worst spinner ever to play test cricket?

  10. BRITS RULE AUSSIES04:05pm Wednesday 27th February 2013 ESTReport Abuse

    Aussies are wankers and WANK in sport. The Brits / Team GB have smashed you pasty skinned Aussie wankers in every major sport, including The Beijing Olympics Medals Tally, Our Olympics Medals Tally, The Ashes 4-1 The One Day Series 4-0 The Tour de France, The UCI World Track Cycling Championships Where The Brits were on Top of The Medals Tally, The Recent Netball Series 3- 0 , Your Own Australian Open Tennis in which Our Britains Andy Murray Dominated and also Won Olympics Gold Medal for GB ( once again you aussie wankers were nowhere ) etc etc etc. The Trouble with you Pink Skinned Aussies is that you HAVE TO IMPORT OVERSEAS TALENT TO REPRESENT YOUR THIRD WORLD KANGAPOO NATION because your own pink skinned aussies are totally useless and just cannot compete with your sporting superiors Great Britain / Team GB. The Brits have once and for all put you Aussie wankers to Bed. Team GB won 29 Gold Medals, and Finished in 3rd place in the world compared to aussies who were lucky to win 7 Gold Medals and finished in 11th place. The Brits are TRULLY ON TOP OF THE WORLD, now they have started to fund sport, as you Aussie wankers have always done. The Union Jack Rules The Aussie Flag, as you Aussies Have No Balls to Stand up on your own two feet, But have to be dependant on The UK The Brits smashed Aussies in every Olympic Discipline, and you Aussies are such bad losers, that your pathetic Media took every opportunity to to belittle their Sporting Superiors Team GB, but luckily I had the good fortune to watch Our fantastis Olympics back home on The BBC. The Trouble with you aussie underachievers is that you just DO NOT have any talent in your third world country. The UK are at a distinct disadvantage in sport with our cold rainy climate unsuitable for sport, and yet continue to smash you Aussies who have an advantage with your sunny climate and outdoor lifestyle ideal for sport. I had the misfortune of visiting your third world country Australia, and the first thing I noticed is how ugly pink skinned and unattractive your population is that resembles your ugly pink skinned Olympians. Not to mention that you guys are approx 15 years behind the UK, and Australia is a predominantly pink skinned country compared to the UK that has 5 generations of British Born Black people, similar to the ethnic diversity of the USA. It has been established that Aussies have an INFERIORITY COMPLEX to the BRITS. . The Brits Won more than 4 times the Gold Medals won by Australia and per Capita / Population The Brits are on top of the world. So if you Aussie wankers are going to respond to me , try not to be too much of a bad loser, and get your facts right after all you aussies should be used to losing, as your third world country is a nation of losers. Rule Britannia, Britannia Rules The Waves. The Brits and the rest of the world laugh at you aussies because of the lack of your sporting success and the inability to win anything, . Now that the Brits have started to get Sports Funding , we will continue to smash you aussie wankers in everything. Quick Medals Update Beijing Olympic games Great Britain 19 Gold Medals, Aussie wankers 13 Gold Medals. Our London Olympic Games Great Britain 29 Gold Medals Aussie wankers 7 Gold Medals. Ha ha ha You Aussie Wankers are Insignificant Inferior, Inadequate, The World Revolves around The Brits, but you Aussies are the Worlds Wankers and have No Influence what so ever

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