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Nathan Lyon hits back at Ahmedabad pitch critics: Read his statement



Australia off-spinner Nathan Lyon said he doesn’t understand the criticism over the pitch that was used for the Pink-ball Test between India and England in Ahmedabad, saying he is “all in” for surfaces that assist spinners. Lyon said he was up all night watching the Test and enjoyed the spinners dominating the proceedings at the Narendra Modi Stadium.

Nathan Lyon was critical of the critics, saying the world “starts crying” only when the pitch offers assistance to spinners but nobody says anything when teams get bowled out cheaply in seaming conditions.

Lyon’s comments come after several former cricketers, especially from England, have been crying foul about the Ahmedabad pitch. Former England captains Michael Vaughan, Alastair Cook and Andrew Strauss have been severely critical of the Motera surface even as India and England’s players played down the role of the pitch for the early finish to the Pink-ball Test.

As many as 27 of the 30 wickets that fell went to spinners as the Pink-ball Test ended in less than 2 days, becoming the shortest completed Test since 1935. England were bundled out for 112 and 81 as India went on to clinch a 10-wicket win and seal a 2-1 lead in the 4-Test series at home.

“We play on seaming wickets around the world and get bowled out for 47, 60. Nobody ever says a thing,” Lyon told AAP.

“But as soon as it starts spinning, everyone in the world seems to start crying about it. I don’t get it. I’m all for it, it was entertaining.

“I was up all night watching it. It was absolutely brilliant. I’m thinking about bringing that curator out to the SCG,” he added.

Lyon, who began his career as a curator himself, said he was baffled to see England play 4 seamers on the Ahmedabad pitch. Notably, Joe Root’s men played Jack Leach as their only spinner while India played 3 in R Ashwin, Axar Patel and Washington Sundar.

Captain Root stepped up for England, picking up a 5-wicket haul in the first innings but Ashwin and Axar shared 18 wickets between them over the 2 days of the Test match.


‘Harry Potter’ and ‘Peaky Blinders’ star Helen McCory dies due to cancer



British film, television and stage actress Helen McCrory has died aged 52 from cancer, her husband and fellow actor Damian Lewis said on Thursday. McCrory “died peacefully at home surrounded by a wave of love from friends and family”, Lewis wrote on Twitter, calling his late wife “beautiful and mighty”.

“We love her and know how lucky we are to have had her in our lives. She blazed so brightly,” the actor added, explaining she had died “after a heroic battle with cancer”.McCrory was best known as a star of the hit BBC crime drama ‘Peaky Blinders’ and for the role of Narcissa Malfoy in the “Harry Potter” films, as the mother of the boy wizard’s school-aged rival.

She played Cherie Blair, the wife of former British prime minister Tony Blair, twice in both the “The Queen” (2006) and “The Special Relationship” (2010), and played fictional British interior minister Clair Dowar in the James Bond film “Skyfall” (2012).

Born in Paddington in west London in 1968 to a Welsh mother and Scottish-born father, McCrory was the eldest of three children. She attended school in southeast England and spent a year living in Italy before studying acting at London’s Drama Centre.

A lengthy acting career followed, which saw her play a multitude of roles on the small and big screen, as well as on stage. McCrory and Lewis, who starred in the US TV series Homeland, married in 2007. The pair met performing in the Shakespeare play “Much Ado About Nothing” as comedic protagonists Beatrice and Benedick.


In 2011, she told the Independent newspaper she had eschewed celebrity but was honoured to have played such interesting roles. An actor’s job, she said, was to “reassure the audience that life, as muddled and as wonderful as it is, is worth living”.

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