Australia spinner Nathan Lyon has heaped praise on India batsman Cheteshwar Pujara but says he’s looking forward to taking him on again.
The number three played a key role as India beat Australia in 2018. Pujara was dismissed twice by Lyon on that tour but still recorded 521 runs at 74.42 as India bagged their first-ever Test series win Down Under.
However, the Australian spinner is looking forward to meeting Pujara when the two sides clash again. India are due to return this summer as long as Coronavirus delays don’t continue.
“I think Pujara flies under the radar a little bit when you look at the Indian cricket side,” said Lyon. “Obviously, you look at (Ajinkya) Rahane and Virat (Kohli) and these guys. But Pujara is a wall. And he's the new wall I should say.
“It helps that he played exceptionally well last time out here. He adapted his game. He had a bit of luck which is what you need when you're playing at the top level. He obviously played his absolute backside off.
“He definitely won't be flying under the radar come this summer,” he added.
Australia keen to set record straight
Lyon believes Australia are a much stronger team than the one India beat last time. He is also looking forward to more quality action.
He said: “They're an absolute powerhouse of the cricket world. To have those guys out here is going to be fantastic. I haven't thought about no crowds or massive crowds – it's just about the opportunity of playing against India again. They had the wood over us last time they came over here but we're a much stronger Australian cricket side at the moment. I'm just unbelievably excited about playing them over here at home.”
Lyon also believes India captain Virat Kohli won’t be fazed by the prospect of playing behind closed doors should it be needed due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
He added: “He's probably good enough to adapt to any scenario. I was actually talking to Mitch Starc the other day and we actually said that if we are playing with no crowd, it'll be quite amazing to see Virat trying to rev up the seats. It's going to be a little bit different. But Virat is a superstar. He'll be able to adapt to any climate that we're able to play in.”