Lyon and Ashwin are the two leading Test spinners of the modern era. While Nathan Lyon is nine short from becoming only the third off-spinner after the legendary Muttiah Muralitharan and ‘turbanator’ Harbhajan Singh to scale the 400-wicket mark in Test match cricket, Ravichandran Ashwin is the fastest to claim 300 wickets and the joint-fastest alongside Muttiah Muralitharan to take 350 scalps.
The duo was at their very best in the first Test at the Adelaide Oval and will have a huge role to play in the upcoming Test matches, especially in Melbourne and Sydney.
Lyon said that Ashwin is a master of variations and is someone who he has watched closely whenever he has traveled to the sub-continent. He, however, added that both of them are completely different as far as their style of bowling is concerned when asked to compare him with the Indian tweaker during the virtual press-conference.
“Ashwin is a world-class bowler, to be honest. I have watched him a lot especially when I had gone to tour India and the subcontinent to try and learn of him. But he is a very cagey bowler, he has got all the variations,” Nathan Lyon said at the virtual press-conference ahead of the Boxing Day Test.
“He’s very cagey with the way he changes his pace, so he is a very talented bowler. We are similar in a way but we are very different as well, so I can’t really compare myself to him. I think his records speak for his own, so hats off to Ashwin,” said the veteran spinner.
When asked if he has any preferable choice for his 400th victim, Lyon shrugged it off by saying that it doesn’t worry him who it is, as long as he can get a ‘nice’ feather in the cap.
”Doesn’t worry me, if it’s (Mayank) Agarwal or (Jasprit) Bumrah, or whoever, batter of bowler, doesn’t worry me whatsoever, just it would be a nice feather in the cap to get there,” he said.
The champion off-spinner also went on to hail Australia’s bowling attack as the best in the world besides adding that he feels privileged to be part of such a world-class group.
“I have said many times before. In my eyes, this is the best bowling attack in the world. We are all, best mates and there is no day goes by when there is not a banter being thrown around in the WhatsApp group,” said Nathan Lyon.