Adelaide: Former ground curator at the Adelaide Oval and now Australia’s star spinner Nathan Lyon has registered his name in Cricket books for life. The orthodox right handed off-break bowler kept stiff vigil at the Proteas batsman in the second Test match between Australia and South Africa (SA) as he bowled 31 maiden overs out of 50 that he bowled in the second innings.
At the end of the match, he was possessed exceptional figures 50-31-49-3. He grabbed three wickets and spent only 49 runs in his 50 difficult overs. He bowled 31 maidens, which makes him stand at the second place in the table of most maidens in an innings. He has placed himself just behind India’s Dilip Doshi who had bowled 34 against New Zealand at Auckland in 1981.
Meanwhile, the figures of Lyon was the result of defending approach of struggling South African batting order. Australia set a mammoth target of 430 runs and made SA to bat again. There were 50 overs on day 47 and the whole day 5 was yet to be played.
Aussies took the early breakthroughs and forced SA in trouble. They were reduced to 45/4 when the debutant Faf Du Plessis and AB De Villiers led the defensive fight-back of their team and stood at the crease for 464 and 245 minutes respectively. They made a partnership of 89 runs of 68 long overs. Lyon took full benefit of the move.
He bowled seven spells on the last day. In his last spell he bowled 11 overs and all of them were maidens. Lyon had given a new turn to the match by taking the wicket of injured but set batsman Jacques Kallis at 46 runs. He took 1 wicket during the spell but couldn’t stop the visitors to end it as a draw.
In the first innings of the match, he bowled 44 overs against SA. He bowled total 94 overs in Adelaide.