Australia’s 2016-17 test tour of India was an intriguing one where the Aussies gave a stern fight to India’s home dominance which saw two of Test Cricket’s finest displays of 2017 from Steve Smith and Nathan Lyon.
The Australian duo were honored with Test Batting and Test Bowling performances of the year award at Espn cricinfo‘s annual awards. Steve Smith’s innings of 108 in the 2nd innings of Pune test match got him the award while Lyon’s spell of 50/8 at Bengaluru saw him earn the test bowling performance of the year.
Steve Smith was gracious in receiving the honor, and as reported by ESPN cricinfo, he said:
“It was nice to be recognized for best innings of the year. It was one of my better hundreds I have scored. 2nd innings in India is very tough to bat, thank you for the award.”
“I had a set game plan for that innings, it wasn’t easy I made sure I played along the line on Jadeja as he was spinning past my bat and somehow I started sweeping Ashwin which I normally don’t do.”
“Something clicked that day and I managed to score the hundred. Once again thank you for the award.”
Test win over India: Steve Smith’s first as Aussie captain
Steve Smith’s innings earned him the first test win in India as Australia’s captain made that knock even more special for him. However, despite the skipper’s brilliance, Australia could not avoid the series defeat as India beat them 2-1 to win the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.
Despite losing the series Nathan Lyon’s bowling was the high point for Australia’s 2016-17 tour of India. Nathan Lyon had India struggling at 189 all-out on the first day of the Bangalore test match but thanks to Indian bowlers, Virat Kohli’s team managed to win the series.
Recalling his spell and accepting the award for Test bowling performance of the year, Nathan Lyon said: “It was one of those game, where I went and tried to bowl well but I look at that game with frustration”.
“I think had we played slightly better we would have won that match but credit to India they outplayed us and deserved to win the match. I love going to India and play my cricket there, it’s a special place to perform and pick wickets.”