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Nathan Lyon to take on an aggressive approach against India batsmen

Press Trust of India
Feb 19, 2013 at 09:41pm IST

Chennai: Australian spinner Nathan Lyon Tuesday said that he would be looking to attack the Indian batsmen on spin-friendly tracks here rather than containing them when the four-Test series commences here later this week.

"I think myself as an attacking option in this Australian side. And also with [Xavier] Doherty around, we have the capability to put the ball consistently in the right place. We hope we will able to do that," said Lyon at an open media session here.

He also said that he had been working hard on variations, after having watched the English spinners during the India-England Test series late last year. "I watched [Graeme] Swann and (Monty) Panesar bowl in India, while I was back in Australia. I have no doubt that variation is important and I've worked on that before coming here.

Lyon to take on an aggressive approach against India batsmen

"I think myself as an attacking option in this Australian side. And also with (Xavier) Doherty around, we have the capability to put the ball consistently in right place," the spinner said.

"I have got different strategies as well and I hope I can use that," said Lyon.

Stating that Swann is his favourite offspinner among the current crop, Lyon said, "At the moment I look at Swann and what he is doing."

On whether there would a lot of pressure on him as a first-choice spinner, the 25-year-old bowler said he was confident of doing his job well.

"Certainly, when you play at international level there is pressure on you to perform. The big thing about our bowling squad is that we have got quality quicks in there. Our pacemen will do a lot of damage here with variable bounce and lot of reverse swing. As for me, as a spinner I have a certain role to play. Hopefully, I will be able to that job for Australia.

"I am very confident. I have good preparation so far having already spent 12 training days in India. I have not had a day off so far. I have learnt about Indian conditions so far, and about my bowling in this condition. I am very confident going into this game," he insisted.

Lyon, however, refused that he had worked on anything particularly for the upcoming tour. "No, it is just about keep working and bowling a lot more and improving myself. Obviously for a spinner, it's a great place to tour and I am looking forward to the opportunity. To bowl in conditions as these against best batsmen and I am very excited with the prospect. Can't wait," he said.

Though Lyon added that the Indian batsmen would pose a huge challenge. "They [Indians] are all very challenging to bowl to. It's going to be a different experience bowling to them."

He, meanwhile, insisted there was no doosra for him. "I can't bowl that one as I have tried it before and it has not worked for me."

On whether he had got any tip from legendary spinner Shane Warne, Lyon said: "I didn't meet him this time. He is a great bowler. I spoke to him before the India series last time, and his advice was unbelievable. On what he said, I can't let all the secrets out."

Asked if it would be a problem with Shane Watson not bowling, the spinner said: "Watson, we all know how talented he is, unbelievably talented. But we have players coming in and can fit into many positions who can contribute with both bat and ball. It is up to [coach Mickey] Arthur and [captain Michael] Clarke to pick the best XI for the match and we have players who can do the job."

India offspinner Harbhajan Singh had recently said that the hosts can beat Australia 4-0, but Lyon said he was not reading too much into it.

"I didn't even know that there were mind games going. I haven't read anything. I am only worried about my game plan and my performances in and around training. We had great series against India back home. Obviously the conditions were different, but we certainly have now confidence especially as we won 4-0. So we are taking positives from that series."

Lyon said that just like the Indian batting line-up, his team also has a great depth. "We have got lot of depth too in our batting. We have different plans and strategies and we are looking forward to opportunities," he said.

Lyon said though the likes of Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman, both of whom retired from international cricket last year, would be missed, it will be a fantastic chance for some of the youngsters to prove their worth. "Dravid and Laxman are two of the greatest. They are a very talented batsman. So I certainly think they will miss them but they have upcoming cricketers like [Virat] Kohli, who is a fantastic cricketers. And it's a fantastic opportunity for them," he stressed.

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