SA vs AUS 2018: Nathan Lyon on the verge of 300 Test wickets at Newlands

Lyon has 296 Test wickets till date.

Lyon is eyeing 300 Test wickets at Newlands.(InsideSport)

Nathan Lyon is sitting pretty at 296 Test wickets before the start of the third Test in Cape Town. Lyon who earlier said that he awaiting to face Kagiso Rabada in the third Test will join an elite club of Australians to do so which includes the likes of Shane Warne, Glenn McGrath, Dennis Lillee, Mitchell Johnson and Brett Lee. Lyon, who was a part of the ground staff at the Adelaide Oval before being selected to play for Australia, has undisputedly been his side's No. 1 spinner for the majority of his career.

Newlands has a rough history associated with Nathan Lyon and the current Australian team who were bundled out for 47 in the third innings after being 21 for 9 at one stage. He top-scored in that innings but the end result was a defeat.

Reminiscing about 2011, Lyon joked being the top-scorer in a total of 47. "You've got to be pretty good to top-score for your country," he said on Tuesday (March 20). "I've been on both ends of the spectrum, obviously when you get bowled out for 47 it is not the best feeling, but we came back a couple of years later to win the way we did was exceptional."

"It happened pretty quick to be honest, I think I walked out to bat when we were 9 for 21 in the 11th over, I'm not usually padded up in the 11th over or trying to pad up in the ninth. It was a little bit different. It's another story in my career, some days you have your day out and big Vernon Philander did that day."

Usman Khawaja further recollected the rough day he had as the  12th man in that Test match. "I remember that when we got South Africa out in that first innings and went to bat in that second innings, it was Pat Cummins and Trent Copeland who were doing 12th with me," he told SEN Radio. "And I just said 'boys, I did my gym session earlier in the day, go do your gym session now, I'll take care of this, we're batting. This'll be easy.'

"At Cape Town, the Twelfthy sits right down the bottom and there are about 70 stairs to climb. Every time there was a wicket I would run up those stairs. A couple of times I ran up the stairs to get someone's gloves and by the time that I got up there they were out so I had to put the stuff back down and grab the other kit. It really was unbelievable.

"It is always a good reminder to myself and I think to anyone that the game is never won and you can never get too far ahead of yourself. Even in my head, I thought that we had a lead of about 200 and even if we got 150 that is game over; it is very hard to chase 350 in the last innings. And we were obviously 9 for 21. You never get ahead of yourself in this game and that very much reminded me of that."

With a fresh new Test match at Newlands, winning which would allow Australia bounce back in the series, Lyon would like to make an important contribution in the game and make it a matchwinning one. 

With so many controversies that have disrupted the Test match, Nathan Lyon is concentrating on achieving this feat and help Australia take the lead in the series. 


By Anshuman Roy - 21 Mar, 2018

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