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Australia ready for India at Adelaide Oval day-night Test

Cricket

Nathan Lyon hopes India’s batsmen come after him, saying Australia’s “best bowling attack in the world” is ready to take on the tourists at the day-night Test beginning at Adelaide Oval on Thursday.

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Australia’s top six for the first Test may be decidedly uncertain because Cameron Green (concussion) remains in doubt, while David Warner (groin) and Will Pucovski (concussion) have been ruled out.

But the hosts’ attack will be a strong suit in the pink-ball Test at the Oval, no matter what their batting order looks like.

Pat Cummins remains the top-ranked Test bowler in the world.

Pink-ball specialist Mitchell Starc rejoined the squad after being granted compassionate leave.

Josh Hazlewood showed promising form in the white-ball leg of India’s tour, while Lyon is 10 wickets shy of celebrating his 400th Test scalp and licking his lips at yet another showdown with Virat Kohli’s men.

“In my eyes, we’ve got the best bowling attack in the world,” Lyon said.

That was arguably also the case in 2018-19, when the quartet shouldered an even bigger burden than normal because of the absence of suspended superstars Warner and Steve Smith.

Cummins, Starc, Hazlewood and Lyon toiled throughout all four Tests that summer but failed to prevent India from storming to their maiden Test series win in Australia.

“We know what happened last series against India out here and how well they played,” Lyon said.

“As bowlers, we’ve already spoken about that and we’ve come up with a few different plans to hopefully challenge the batters’ defence for long periods of time this time around.

“We’re in such a better place compared to two years ago.

“We’ve done a bit of homework … I’m not going to reveal all my plans and our bowling plans in the media for India to read about but we’ve got a few things lined up.”

Adelaide has proven a happy hunting ground for Lyon in Border-Gavaskar battles.

The offspinner has snared three five-wicket hauls from his past two Tests at Adelaide Oval against Kohli’s team.

Lyon, having gained a new confident streak in recent years, is keen for India’s star-studded batting order to try to put him under pressure.

“Over the past five years my bowling has probably gone to a new level, I’m really confident with where my bowling is at,” Lyon said.

“I always enjoy playing against India. Obviously they’re some of the best players in the world, especially playing spin.

“They’re a very attacking side. They always want to attack a spinner.

“Which is fantastic, I love that.”

India’s top six could potentially all be right-handers.

Lyon’s perceived weakness against right-handers partly cost him a spot in Australia’s XI for the first Ashes Test of 2013 but he has come a long way since then.

“I’m really looking to try to bring both edges into play with catches around the bat,” he said.

-with AAP

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