Aussie spinner Lyon targeting 500 Test wickets
SYDNEY, – Australian off-spinner Nathan Lyon has lofty plans to join a select few greats to snare 500 Test wickets, with India the next team in his sights. Lyon, who turned 33 on Friday, currently has 390 scalps, behind only Shane Warne (708) and Glenn McGrath (563) on the Australian pecking order.
Sri Lankan legend Muttiah Muralitharan holds the all-time record with 800. Despite Mitchell Swepson knocking on the door — and in Australia’s 17-man Test squad to face India — Lyon remains his side’s main spin option and he has no plans to relinquish it.
“I still feel I’m getting better and still feel like I’ve got a lot of cricket to offer Cricket Australia,” he said in a Q&A with News Corp. readers late Thursday. “Definitely 500 (wickets) and beyond is on my radar.” He said he felt he was only improving the older he got.
“I think it’s a craft we can’t afford to rush,” he said. “It’s a craft you learn and you keep learning and you get better with age.” Lyon will reach the 100-Test milestone against India in Brisbane should he, as expected, play the preceding Tests in Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney, starting on December 17.
The Adelaide Test will be his first since January due to Covid-19, a vacuum that has only driven his desire to keep going. “Without being able to play the game that you love so much and not being able to play that regularly, that’s driven my passion to get out there and that hunger to perform well again,” he said. “The most I’ve missed is that pressure that comes along with playing Test cricket. Missing that adrenaline.”