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Why India's batsmen need to watch out for Lyon

Source: PTI
December 14, 2018 18:05 IST
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'I think Nathan Lyon will enjoy bowling with the amount of bounce on this track.'

IMAGE: Nathan Lyon, left, shadow bats next to Virat Kohli during the first Test in Adelaide. Photograph: Ryan Pierse/Getty Images

Australia opener Aaron Finch believes the second Test against India is going to be a 'real grind' and off-spinner Nathan Lyon will play an important role considering the amount of bounce on offer in the pitch in the ongoing second Test in Perth.

Finch and Marcus Harris put on 112 runs for the opening partnership after which Australia finished the opening day on 277 for six.

"It's going to be one of those games that'll be a real grind for both sides. The position we are in we would have taken at the start of the day, no doubt, especially winning the toss and batting," Finch said on Friday at the end of Day 1.

IMAGE: Nathan Lyon, left, shadow bats next to Virat Kohli during the first Test in Adelaide. Photograph: Ryan Pierse/Getty Images

"I think Nathan Lyon will enjoy bowling with the amount of bounce on this track, no doubt he will be excited to bowl here," added the opener, who scored 50 in Australia's first innings.

Finch said batsmen can become indecisive sometimes while playing on this wicket.

"When the ball starts seaming off good parts of the wicket and quite dramatically at times, I think that's when you know you need to tighten up," he said.

"But you have to also be in a position to cash in on some balls that you can hit, otherwise you get stuck in two minds and end up letting the wicket get you out.

"So you have to be really proactive and take that out of play as much as you can," he added, on how he and Harris batted on this wicket."

India struck back with three wickets each in the second and third sessions, but Australia seemed to have gained the upperhand at stumps.

Asked about making the Indian bowlers work hard, Finch said, "Our plan was to bat on this wicket regardless of what happened in Adelaide, the heat and getting miles into their legs.

"That was our plan to bat first anyway and take that challenges head on. No doubt it might play a factor later in this game, or third or fourth Test, but it was always our plan to bat (after winning the toss)."

Talking about his partner young Harris, who scored his maiden Test half-century at his home ground, Finch said, "I think what everyone's seen from him so far, not a lot fazes him. He's a pretty chilled out character who just goes with the flow and that's the way he's always been.

"He's a great guy, but I think the tightness of his technique – he covers his off stump, looks to hit down the ground and for such a short guy that can be quite unique at times.

"He's definitely got all the shots, but I think the way he adapts his game and his game plan depending on the wicket, depending on the attack, I think that will hold him in great stead."

Finch said playing together with Harris at Victoria in Sheffield Shield helped their partnership.

"We have also played quite a bit of cricket together for Victoria so when you have a good relationship with somebody that stuff takes care of itself," he said.

"Batting out in the middle is always good fun with him. He keeps it pretty simple pretty relaxed. We just keep reminding each other to focus on what our game plan is and what our strengths are."

Under-fire after flopping in the opening Test, Finch scored his second Test half-century on Day 1and spoke about the influence of Ricky Ponting with whom he had worked before the start of this game.

"It (talking to Ponting) was really good because it was so simple. It was basically around covering my off stump and lining up slightly different my alignment and where I want to hit the ball," he said.

"It was good to have someone to chat to who's had to work through that and alignment and things like that. It wasn't anything I went out in the game with as such. It was more just moving my guard slightly further over," he added.

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