Nathan Lyon, the Australian off-spinner said he is surprised by the widespread criticism over the spin-friendly nature of the Ahmedabad pitch used for the 3rd Pink-ball Test and stressed that nobody talks about seaming pitches in the same manner.
Australia off-spinner Nathan Lyon said he doesn’t understand the criticism and unnecessary hype over the pitch that was used for the Pink-ball Test between India and England in Ahmedabad, saying he is “all in” for surfaces that assist spinners.
Nathan Lyon: As Soon As Pitch Starts Spinning, Everyone In World Starts Crying About It Which Is Baffling
Nathan Lyon said he was up all night watching the 3rd Test between England and India and enjoyed the spinners dominating the proceedings at the newly built Narendra Modi Stadium. Nathan Lyon was critical of the critics, saying the world “starts crying” only when the pitch offers assistance to spinners but nobody says anything when teams involved get bowled out cheaply in seaming conditions.
His comments came after several former cricketers, especially from England, have been criticising the Ahmedabad pitch. Former England captains Michael Vaughan, Alastair Cook, and Andrew Strauss have been severely critical of the Motera surface even as India and England’s players involved played down the role of the pitch for the early finish to the Pink-ball Test.
As many as 27 of the 30 wickets that fell went to spinners as the Pink-ball Test ended in less than 2 days, becoming the shortest completed Test since 1935. England was bundled out after scoring a paltry 112 and 81 as India went on to clinch a 10-wicket win and seal a 2-1 lead in the 4-Test series at home.
“We play on seaming wickets around the world and get bowled out for 47, 60. Nobody ever says a thing,” Nathan Lyon told AAP.
“But as soon as it starts spinning, everyone in the world seems to start crying about it. I don’t get it. I’m all for it, it was entertaining. I was up all night watching it. It was absolutely brilliant. I’m thinking about bringing that curator out to the SCG,” he added.
Nathan Lyon, who began his career as a curator himself, said he was baffled to see England play 4 seamers on the Ahmedabad pitch. Notably, Joe Root-led England played Jack Leach as their only spinner while India played 3 in Ravichandran Ashwin, Axar Patel, and Washington Sundar.
Captain Joe Root, part-time spinner picked up his maiden 5-wicket haul in the first innings of the 3rd Test but Ravichandran Ashwin and Axar Patel were even better as the duo shared 18 wickets between them over the 2 days of the Test match.
Pragyan Ojha And Ravichandran Ashwin On The Pitch Controversy
Notably, former India spinner Pragyan Ojha had also argued on the same lines while defending the Motera pitch.
“Please talk about Stuart Broad’s 8 for 15, the wicket that he was bowling on in that match. What kind of a wicket was that? If the Test finishes in 2 or 3 days in seaming conditions where there is grass that’s absolutely fine. But the moment it starts turning and bouncing, that’s when you say it’s not a 5-day wicket or a Test-match wicket,” Pragyan Ojha said.
Pragyan Ojha explained that Indian spinners were more successful than their English counterparts because they stuck to better lines and lengths on the turning surface. Pragyan Ojha questioned the reason behind seaming tracks that assist pacers in England, where Tests sometimes finish inside 2 or 3 days, are considered to be good, and turning tracks in India favouring spinners are slammed on a consistent basis.
Meanwhile, Indian spinner Ravichandran Ashwin, while speaking to the press on Saturday, said the pitch debate is getting out of hand and that it needs to end. He responded to an English scribe who asked him if he considered the Ahmedabad pitch a ‘good one’ by posing a return question.
“Who defines what a good surface is? The seam on the first day, then bat well in the next couple of days and spin on the last two days, come on, who makes these rules?” Ashwin said.
“We need to get over it and if you are asking whether the pitch in the third Test was a good surface, I do not see any players of England coming out and complaining.”
Ravichandran Ashwin, responding to the criticism over the pitch, said the talk about the surfaces is getting out of grasp and it needs to stop someday or other. Notably, he led the defence of the pitch that was on offer for the 2nd Test in Chennai by hitting a ton.