Nathan Lyon aims sly dig at England after Australia retain Ashes
Australian off-spinner Nathan Lyon has taken a dig at England after Australia retained the Ashes earlier this summer following a 2-2 draw against the hosts in the five-match series. Australia took the lead after winning the first Test in Edgbaston comfortably by 251 runs before drawing the second Test at Lord's. Ben Stokes then turned out to be England's hero as he single-handedly won the hosts the third Test at Headingley in Leeds before Steve Smith inspired Aussies to another emphatic win in the 4th Test. England salvaged a draw by winning the final Test at the Oval with Australia retaining the prestigious urn.
Lyon praised the team's effort to draw the Test series in England's own backyard and hailed Australia's fighting spirit despite facing several odds including hostile crowds throughout the series. Australia had earlier reached the semi-final of the 2019 World Cup - where they lost against England to bow out of the showpiece event before retaining the Ashes. Lyon said Australia deserved to celebrate despite not managing to win the series.
Taking a dig at England, the Australian spinner reckoned England had done the same after drawing the World Cup final against New Zealand. The final of 2019 World Cup saw a thrilling end after both England and New Zealand scored the same amount of runs (15) in the Super Over which ended in a tie only for the hosts to be declared winners on the virtue of the boundary count rule.
"We went over there knowing everyone was going to hate us, that we were going to have 2,000 Aussies in the crowd and our families, but everyone else hates us and wants to see us lose. To have that adversity and be up against the wall … it meant as a cricket side we had to become tighter and closer and I think we did that, especially during the Ashes. And we were able to come out on top," Lyon said in an interview.
"Even though it's a 2-2 series and England were telling me I couldn't celebrate a draw, but they did exactly that during the World Cup. I wanted to make sure we were celebrating that moment," he added.
Lyon had a decent outing in the Ashes 2019 helping Australia win the first and the fourth Test. He returned with 20 wickets from five matches and was Australia's third-highest wicket-taker after Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood.