Pujara a world-class batsman, will be a big challenge for rest of series: Lyon



Australia's "in-depth" planning to subdue Cheteshwar Pujara worked out well in the opening Test but spinner Nathan Lyon says it would be a massive challenge to keep the "world-class" batsman quiet through the remainder of the series.

Lyon said the home team has a couple of more surprises lined up for Pujara, who is considered crucial in the Indian batting line-up for his doggedness. The second Test begins on Saturday in Melbourne.

"I can't reveal secrets, to be honest with you. But, obviously, Pujara is a world-class batter, and he is going to be a big challenge for us for the rest of the series," 33-year-old Lyon said at a virtual press conference on Wednesday.

"We spoke about him (Pujara) in depth before the series started, it was good to see a couple of plans come off in Adelaide, but we have got a couple more things.

"So, hopefully, if he does get in, we can put into the ploy. It is always fun challenging yourself against the best players in the world and Pujara is definitely one of those guys," added the senior spinner but refused to elaborate on his plans.

Lyon had dismissed a well-set Pujara for 43 in the first innings of the Adelaide Test, which Australia won by eight wickets.

Lyon also said India has got enough players to fill in the "big hole" left by talismanic skipper Virat Kohli, who has returned to India for the birth of his first child.

"Ajinkya Rahane and (Cheteshwar) Pujara, just to name a couple. But you still got the likes of (KL) Rahul and (Mayank) Agarwal, who have been exceptional as well, so there is (are) enough guys in that squad to fill Virat's shoes," he said.

"It is going to be a big challenge for us again and we will start our preparation well and make sure we are prepared to take on India again on (the) Boxing Day, it is going to be another big challenge for us," added Lyon, who has 391 Test wickets to his credit.

Lyon also feels that Indian batsmen will try and attack him once again, a strategy that he is both familiar and comfortable with.

India recorded their lowest Test score of 36/9 in Adelaide, but Lyon is confident that the visitors would come out all guns blazing in the second Test.

The second Test of the four-match series will be aired on Sony Ten 1, Sony Ten 3 and Sony Six channels, from December 26, from 4:30 am onwards. (PTI)


Also Read: Over 5,000 singers to participate in Bengal music festival from December 24