Smith critiques Lyon

Australia skipper Steve Smith has been critical of the bowling performance of veteran spinner and cult hero Nathan Lyon after the fourth day of the second Test against Pakistan.

Smith conceded that while it was always going to be tough to bowl spin to players from the subcontinent they were looking for more consistency from the tweaker.

Smith who smashed an unbeaten ton on another rain-hit day at the MCG was asked if Lyon would feature in the third Test in Sydney and replied: "I'm not sure. That's up to the selectors.

"He obviously hasn't bowled at his best in this game. It's always difficult bowling to lots of right-handers.

"And they [Pakistan] play spin pretty well. It's never easy bowling against subcontinent players when the ball isn't doing a lot off the wicket as well. I guess we're just looking for Nathan to be a little bit more consistent in the way he bowls."

Australia's spin options are limited with Steve O'Keefe likely to be behind Lyon in the pecking order with Jon Holland out injured but concerns remain about the left armer's fitness.

Another option would be to include a spin bowling allrounder like Glen Maxwell or Ashton Agar but it seems more likely that the number six slot will be handed to seam bowling jack off all trades Hilton Cartwright as the support team seek to lighten the quick bowler’s load.

Of the quick bowlers Smith said: "They have done some bowling.

"It's obviously been a pretty big summer for them as well – six Test matches is always a lot. They've done some yards, which is a little concerning. But I think they're pretty confident in their bodies at the moment that everything's going okay.

"At the end of this Test match is another opportunity for us to sum up where they're at. They might not end up bowling much, or at all, tomorrow. We're going to have to sum that up and see how they pull up after this Test match to see what happens in the next Test match.

"We're going to have to weigh that up. We've got Hilton here. We had him in here as cover for those quicks who had a big workload last week. They were confident this week of being able to get through and get the job done. It's going to be about summing it up and seeing where they're at after this Test match."

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