Lyon sparks mind games by claiming Australia can whitewash England at Ashes

Nathan Lyon has backed Australia to complete a 5-0 Ashes whitewash over England, following their nine-wicket win in the first Test of the series at the Gabba.

Lyon picked up his 400th Test wicket in that game, helping spin his side to victory with 4-91 in England's second innings.

The second Test, a day-night pink ball game, is due to get underway on Thursday in Adelaide and Lyon is confident Australia can whitewash their rivals.

"I do believe we can win 5-0… for sure," he told Australian media . "I've never walked into a Test series thinking I'm going to go in there and lose a game.

"We'll do everything we can. If we prepare well and play the right positive brand of cricket under our new captain, there's no reason why we can't win 5-0.

"In saying that, England's a classy outfit, and they're going to challenge us here and there. With two pink-ball games now, we're going to make sure we're totally on our game."

Lyon also offered his support to England spinner Jack Leach, who endured a torrid time in the first Test.

Leach returned figures of 1-102 from 13 overs in Australia's first innings, with the likes of David Warner, Marnus Labuschagne and Travis Head looking to attack him.

The 30-year-old has been named in England's 12-man squad for the second Test and will compete with James Anderson, Stuart Broad, Ollie Robinson and Chris Woakes for a spot in the starting XI.

"I'm always happy to play a spinner on no matter what wicket," Lyon said. "The way I look at Test cricket, you just can't pick your team for the first session of the Test.

"Test cricket is a long, challenging game, but I am expecting Broad and Anderson to play. Whether they play a spinner or not, that's not up to me. They've got Joe Root who has shown he is more than capable.

"I understand and know exactly how [Leach] feels bowling here in Australia. It is challenging but no doubt he's a class bowler and he'll bounce back. He'll do his work and we need to make sure Australia is prepared.

"Full credit to our batters. They took the game to him and sometimes you need to do that as cricketers – to put the other team under pressure."

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