Jaipur:Thrust into captaincy after regular skipper Graeme Smith's finger injury, Jacques Kallis on Saturday said the ODI series against India is part of South Africa's preparation for next year's World Cup, to be held in the sub-continent.
"It's a great honour to lead the side and I'm looking forward to it. I have done it before and enjoyed the experience of leading," said the burly all-rounder who would be playing his 296th ODI on Sunday.
"From team point of view, there is a lot at stake in the series. World Cup is here in another year's time and a lot, including about conditions, can be learnt from this series," explained the 34-year-old player.
"We need to win this series as part of our preparation for the World Cup. We have not done well against England at home and we need to turn around," said the Pinelands-born player.
Kallis said the South African team management was trying to figure out the combination that suited the team best and the ODI gives them a good opportunity to assess some of the young players ahead of the World Cup.
"We are trying to find out the right combination in these conditions. We have come here to win the series and learn more about the players and see how good they are," Kallis explained.
He said veteran stumper Mark Boucher was ready for the match, having received the medics' thumbs-up.
Confident that his team can beat India in the three-match series, Kallis said the abundance of all-rounders gives his team a distinct advantage.
"We are fortunate to have a lot of all-rounders. You need them in ODIs. In one-dayers, you want to bat as deep as you can and we have been fortunate in that aspect," he said.
Kallis felt India would miss Harbhajan Singh, who skipped the tie to attend his sister's marriage, even though he was not ready to take them lightly.
"He is a world class bowler of course but India have some more quality bowlers and they are a strong one-day side. We cannot take them lightly and it would be an interesting series," said the South African.