Nathan Lyon says he wouldn’t hesitate to play in this summer’s Ashes if he was an England player despite ongoing uncertainty over tour conditions.
Speaking on Fox Sports’ Road to the Ashes podcast on Wednesday, the off-spinner weighed in on concerns that English players will pull out of the blockbuster series if strict isolation measures are in place.
Asked by Brendon Julian if he understands the hesitancy of some players, Lyon said he does — but doesn’t believe he would have any issues himself.
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“I can probably understand it, but I think as professional athletes and cricketers we’re so lucky in what we do and it really comes upon us to give back to the game that’s given us so much,” Lyon said.
“I wouldn’t have a doubt in coming out if it was myself.”
He added: “Especially in an Ashes series. An Ashes series, they’re the type of series that can honestly make someone’s career.”
Lyon noted that he hasn’t been in the same situation as England’s Test cricketers, who have already toured Sri Lanka and India in 2021 and will be asked to tour Australia, too. Some may do so after playing in the T20 World Cup in the UAE, starting in mid-October.
By contrast, Australia’s male cricketers have only featured in white ball tours of New Zealand, the Caribbean and Bangladesh since last summer.
The absence of red ball cricket has meant Lyon — who doesn’t play in the Indian Premier League — has stayed on Australian shores, completing a rare pre-season in preparation for the summer.
Nonetheless, while the 33-year-old agrees that playing in bio-secure bubbles is a mentally exhausting experience, he believes that featuring in an Ashes would make it worth while.
“It can wear you down I guess but, as I said, it’s a small price to pay in my eyes,” Lyon said.
“That’s a very, probably, selfish opinion from me. I’m not going to the IPL, I’ve been home for the past eight months or so, so I’m itching to get out there.”
The ECB is this week reviewing tour conditions put forward by Cricket Australia and is expected to present them to its players in early October.
An inside source told Sportsmail last week that the proposed touring conditions are “better than expected”.