News – Cricket: Nathan Lyon has saved his best for last after a brilliant summer – sending down this pearler to dismiss Alastair Cook.


  • Just looking at him bat you wonder why he hasn’t had more success in international cricket: he looks organised, he wants to bat long, he’s a good player of spin, he leaves the ball well outside off stump, he just looks a good player and he knows his game.
  • I always like the tempo of his innings, I’ve seen him bat throughout this Ashes series and he plays the situation, he never completely goes into his bunker and he is never completely over-attacking, his tempo of batting is absolutely spot on for Test match cricket.
  • England have not got 20 wickets in any Test match in this series and they look a very one-dimensional side when the ball isn’t moving around, this Australia batting line-up is similar.
  • They are very good at home when the ball is not moving around, they have been pretty flat pitches with a Kookaburra ball but what they need to put to bed is the idea that when there is any kind of lateral movement, whether it be seam and swing like we see in England, spin in India — even Bangladesh where they drew the series last year — that they struggle, playing with hard hands and hitting through the ball.
  • Whether it be Ben Duckett in Bangladesh and India, getting out the same way to Mehedi Hasan and Ravi Ashwin every time, bowled showing his stumps, Adam Lyth nicking off to fifth stump deliveries around waist height, Gary Ballance being pushed back and then the sucker-punch full delivery or Tom Westley in the summer with his closed bat face, it says something their technique and that they’re getting runs in county cricket.

Read more…