Sydney, Jan 5: Nathan Lyon was delighted to be able to put on a show for his family and friends as the Australia bowler claimed 5-68 in the third Test against New Zealand at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
The spin bowler shrugged off a nasty thumb injury and two dropped catches as he starred with the ball, helping to skittle the Black Caps for 251 before the hosts extended their lead to 243 runs - without losing a second-innings wicket - at the end of day three.
Lyon had never posted a five-for at the SCG before and was glad to have done so in a fine display on Sunday.
"It's always special being part of the Sydney Test match and playing in front of your family and friends, and to perform in the first innings was pretty special," he said.
"There's still plenty of work to do in the second dig, but if you were rocking up today and saying we'd end up with a lead of 240 and 10 wickets in hand, we'll take that every day."
Australia's bowlers have pledged to donate $1,000AUD to the bushfire relief appeal for every wicket they take in the Test.
Discussing the devastating fires that have swept the country, Lyon added: "We're not doing it [donating money] for recognition or anything like that...we're playing a game of cricket and there's people being severely affected by fires.
"It puts cricket in perspective and it's really showing Australia's true colours. The true heroes of Australia right now are the firefighters and the volunteers.
"Everyone rallies behind someone when they're having a hard time. I'm proud to be Australian in hard times, to be honest, and we're getting around them."
Asked about his impressive recent form, Lyon suggested it was as much about the entire bowling unit as his own efforts.
"I'm fortunate to be part of the best bowling attack in the world so it's just about building pressure from both ends," he said.
"We've been able to do that over the last eight months or so. We're just getting our reward for all our hard work and preparation."