Lyon backs umpires, says both teams need to calm down

MELBOURNE :  Indian cricket captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni might feel that umpiring in the ongoing Test series needs to improve but Australian off-spinner Nathan Lyon today said officials have done a good job and a couple of bad decisions should not provoke on-field altercations.
India were at the receiving end of at least five contentious calls in the first two Tests, both of which the visitors lost, prompting Dhoni to state that umpiring could certainly improve.
Lyon said the teams should not fret over umpiring and neither should the players allow it to become a reason for flared tempers.
“You’re going to have to control your emotions out there. In Adelaide too some emotions were flying quite high when a couple of decisions weren’t going either way. But that’s Test match cricket. There are enough emotions out there in the middle. We just have to keep patient and keep working hard and not worry about what the umpire says,” Lyon told reporters here.
He was answering specifically to the point brought up by Dhoni, wherein on Saturday he had commented on the inconsistent umpiring in this ongoing series. The umpiring blunders has triggered a debate on whether the Decision Review System should have been used in the series.
“I personally think they’ve done a pretty good job,” Lyon said supporting the umpires, Ian Gould and Marais Erasmus.
“It’s been quite tough for them, especially in Adelaide. That wicket was a pretty tough wicket. It’s going to swing both ways (with such decisions). We could have had a different result in Adelaide (in the first Test) if we had DRS but in saying that it could have gone our way as well,” he added.
Talking specifically about the DRS debate, he opined, “Both team have to agree to use it. I know I am definitely not against DRS. I think it is good for the game.”
“I don’t have any problem with it. But both team have to agree to use it,” he replied, when asked about the issues that the Indian players have voiced about DRS in recent days.
Australia have quite a few injury worries going into the Boxing Day Test. Peter Siddle and Ryan Harris have been bowling in the nets, while David Warner is expected to overcome his sore thumb and be fit for the match.
Mitchell Marsh has already been ruled out and batsman Joe Burns has been drafted into the side in his place.
It was in these circumstances that Australia needed to chase 130 runs on a difficult Gabba wicket and they made heavy weather of it, getting stuck at 122/6 at one stage.
It puts the onus on both Shane Watson and Brad Haddin to score some runs, the duo having done nothing of note with the bat so far in the series.
“Shane is a world-class batsman and I can guarantee that he’s being positive in his thinking. Not only that, a lot of credit for the win in the Brisbane Test goes to him. We talk of bowling in partnerships but a lot of people don’t see it that way,” said Lyon.
“He got one wicket in the first innings and none in the second innings, but the way he held together one end there and created pressure allowed us to take wickets from the other end. I’m pretty sure he can bowl a lot worse than that and come out and take five-for,” he added.
Haddin, meanwhile, has received support from both skipper Steve Smith and coach Darren Lehmann. Lyon only added to what has been said earlier about the 37-year-old wicket-keeper.
“Everyone thinks Brad is under pressure but he can come out and score runs easily. He is his normal self at the moment and he is a great leader. I am sure he’ll be able to get some runs when we need him too.
“He hasn’t had the best run of luck in this Test series, but if you look back at the last series here in Australia he saved us in every Test match,” said Lyon referring to the Ashes which Australia won.
Finally, despite leading very well in his first Test in-charge, there is already a sword hanging over young captain Smith. He was fined for slow over-rate and another such instance could see him getting a one-match suspension.
Australia will have to be on the money with their over-rates in Melbourne.
“It means more overs for the spinner and that’s me,” Lyon signed off. (AGENCIES)


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