Lyon wants to make statement in England warm-up
The off-spinner has not played white-ball cricket for Australia since 2016.
Nathan Lyon is hoping more success against England can help him force his way back into Australia’s limited-overs side.
Lyon is the most successful off-spinner ever to play Test cricket for his country, with a haul of 290 wickets earning him the affectionate nickname of ‘Goat’ (greatest of all time), but he has never been trusted in the white-ball arena.
He played the last of his 13 one-day internationals in August 2016 and his solitary Twenty20 seven months earlier, leaving fans Down Under scratching their head at his continued absence.
Steve Smith fielded several questions about Lyon’s exclusion as Australia lost the ODI series 4-1 to England but he has been overlooked again for the forthcoming T20s.
Instead, Lyon must settle for captaining the Prime Minister’s XI against the tourists in Canberra on Friday, and the shop window it affords him.
“I definitely want to play every opportunity I get. All three formats is my goal, there’s no point hiding behind that,” he said.
“It’s a personal goal but, to be honest, the ball is in my court. If I go out and perform well it makes the selectors make a hard choice.
“But I’m not really worried about trying to prove anything, I’ve just got to go out and bowl well. “Any time I walk out on a field, whether it’s Australia, Sydney Sixers, Prime Minster’s team or New South Wales, I’m going out there and trying to win.”
Having turned out for his media call in a matchday kit which shares the canary colourings of the Australian side, Lyon made light of his one-day exile, adding: “I haven’t broken out in hives yet with the yellow clothes on.”
Lyon will lead a strong side at the Manuka Oval pitch where he once worked as a curator, with seven internationals in the XI.
Peter Handscomb, dropped during the Ashes, returns for another crack at England, with James Faulkner, Peter Nevill and Nic Maddinson among the other notable names.