Former Australian skipper Ricky Ponting, on Tuesday, insists that the fantastic off-spinner Nathan Lyon could finish as one of the best-ever bowlers in the history of the Australian cricket.
The cricketer-turned-commentator believes that Nathan Lyon could play for another five to seven years, as he is highly impressed with his fitness level. At the moment, the 30-year-old Lyon is already the most successful off-spinner in Australian history with 274 wickets in his 70 Tests so far. Ponting also backed the star off-spinner to end up with 400 wickets-plus in Test cricket.
During the Day 3 of the ongoing Adelaide Test, Lyon has already overtaken the Indian spinner R Ashwin and now in contention with him in finishing the highest wicket-taker of the year 2017.
Ricky Ponting told cricket.com.au, “He could play for another five to seven years quite easily. He’s fit, he’s bowling brilliantly, it doesn’t look like he’s going to slow down anytime soon. (Lyon’s) is probably an underrated record. He’s someone who’s not spoken about anywhere near as much as he should be.”
Two-time World Cup-winning captain further added, “Look at what he’s done through his career, it’s fantastic. If he plays for another four or five years, and he’s taken 50 wickets this year, times that by five or six and he could end up with 400 wickets-plus, there’s no doubt about it.”
Commenting on his effort with the ball, the 42-year-old said, “Nathan’s confidence has gone through the roof and it’s grown tenfold since the tour of Sri Lanka last year when he lost all confidence. To be able to bounce back from that and have the year that he’s had so far says a lot about him and the confidence the captain has in him. I’ve watched him for a long time, I’ve played with him for a few years, the way he’s releasing the ball now is just absolutely superb.”
Ponting concluded by saying, “He sums up the conditions really well too. We saw that in Brisbane with a bit more over-spin that he put on the ball in the first innings of the game, he tries to get as much bounce as he can and he does get a lot of bounce for an off-spinner."