What Nathan Lyon is to Australia, R Ashwin is to India in the present scenario. Lyon has picked up the most wickets for by any Australia off-spinner. It is, thus, he was nicknamed GOAT by his teammates. R Ashwin, on the contrary, has plenty of variations up his sleeve but has not been a regular in the Test side after the emergence of spin twins Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav.
Going by stats, Lyon has featured in 90 Tests, picking up 390 wickets at an average of 31.58. He has an economy rate of 3 and picked up a five-wicket haul 18 times in his career so far. Ashwin, on the other hand, has picked up 365 wickets from 75 matches. He has an economy rate of 2.84 and has picked up 27 five-wicket hauls.
The stats, clearly puts Ashwin ahead in the race.
I am going with Nathan Lyon, especially in the recent past: Aakash Chopra
Asked to pick up a better Test spinner, Aakash Chopra went with Nathan Lyon. Explaining his choice, Chopra said that he likes his action and the fact that he can bowl and deliver for the side on pitches not suitable for the bowlers. He also mentioned Ashwin might be miles ahead while playing in spin friendly pitches in India.
“I am going with Nathan Lyon, especially in the recent past. It is because I like a couple of things about Nathan Lyon. Firstly, I like his body action. He puts the body behind the delivery. He gets good bounce. And in conditions where the pitch is not tailor-made for spin, there also he does very well,” Aakash Chopra said.
“If you play Ashwin and Lyon in spin-friendly conditions, say in India, Ashwin will be miles ahead. And he will take wickets quickly and consistently against any opposition team.”
Lyon and Ashwin might be seen in action next during India’s tour Down Under in December.