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England's Tom Hartley thinks playing with Nathan Lyon can be 'game-changer' as he looks to secure Test place

England's Tom Hartley hopes playing alongside Nathan Lyon for Lancashire will take his bowling to a new level; spinner wants to improve batting and become all-rounder - follow England's final Test against India with blog on and Sky Sports App from Thursday

England's Tom Hartley leaves the ground after England won the first cricket test match against India in Hyderabad, India, Sunday, Jan. 28, 2024. (AP Photo/Mahesh Kumar A.)
Image: Tom Hartley is looking forward to playing alongside Australia's Nathan Lyon at Lancashire this summer

England spinner Tom Hartley hopes playing alongside Nathan Lyon at Lancashire this summer will be a "game-changer" as he looks to secure a long-term place in the Test side.

Left-armer Hartley has taken 20 wickets in four Tests at an average of 33.45 during England's series in India, including a second-innings seven-for on debut in Hyderabad in January.

The 24-year-old's chances of featuring regularly in the County Championship may have taken a hit following Lancashire's acquisition of Australia off-spinner Lyon on a season-long deal.

England's Tom Hartley (Associated Press)
Image: Hartley has taken 20 wickets in four Tests this winter

But Hartley thinks the 36-year-old, who claimed his fifth 10-wicket match haul in Tests on Sunday as Australia thrashed New Zealand and has 527 Test wickets in total, can help him take his bowling to the next level.

He said: "Playing alongside (Lyon) would be fantastic. I hope he's going to be fantastic for me and be a real game-changer.

"He's going to be great to learn off. He's probably going to be fed up of me by September. Hopefully we can get on really well.

"The type of bowler he is is something I'm trying to work on. The way he operates in Australia on pretty flat wickets, there are times when English wickets are pretty similar.

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Australia's Nathan Lyon (Associated Press)
Image: Lyon has taken 527 Test wickets or Australia, including 24 five-fors

'I believe I can be a pretty good red-ball bowler'

"The way it was going, I was naturally trailing down that white-ball route but that's just because there was more opportunities for me that way.

"Playing this series [against India] has really opened my eyes and made me believe that I can be a pretty good red-ball bowler. I've got a lot more confidence now.

"There will be extra incentive for me to play this summer and really try and do well for Lancs."

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Ben Stokes hailed Hartley after the spinner's seven-wicket haul led England to victory over India in the first Test

Hartley has also chipped in with 159 runs in the India series and says he is now trying to become a fully-fledged all-rounder as he looks to remain a Lancashire regular and push to play for England at home to Sri Lanka and West Indies this summer.

"I'm really trying to work on my batting and become more of that all-rounder role which makes me a lot easier to pick," he added.

"I've made big strides in these last two years with my batting but I still feel there are gaps there and that (improving) only really comes with time at the crease.

England's Tom Hartley bats against India (Associated Press)
Image: Hartley wants to improve his batting this summer

"Sometimes I've just got to relax myself, take my time to get in and just have a bit more patience. I think I get a bit carried away trying to hit sixes and fours.

"[England captain Ben Stokes and coach Brendon McCullum] are over the moon whenever I hit a six, that's what I get cheered for.

"Coming back in the dressing room, that's what they talk to me about. It just encourages me to play more of them."

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