Shane Warne raring to go

Ace Australian spinner Shane Warne is all set to take on the famed Indian batting lineup.

updated: February 25, 2007 10:09 IST
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Ace Australian spinner Shane Warne is all set to take on the famed Indian batting lineup. Though the bowler did not enjoy much success when the Aussies last toured India, Warne says he is much fitter this time around. "I haven't played in India since that series three years ago, so I think I'm in better shape than I was then," he says. "I think our batsmen are better prepared and our fast bowlers are ready to go as well. I just think we've got a good squad and they're ready to play," the bowler says. Indian challenge Warne has played just six Tests against India in India, taking just 20 wickets. His bowling average in India is almost double of what is overall, which means he gives away more than 50 runs for every wicket he's taken in India. His strike rate in India is also a poor 95.7, while overall it's about 60. This means that each wicket in India takes him about 15 overs to get. "I suppose, against Pakistan and Sri Lanka, I've done extremely well. India at times I've done well too. I think I've taken six or seven wickets in the first Test of both series, but after that they decide to whack me all over the park," Warne says. 'Fitter and fresher' Besides experience, Warne feels his greatest advantage this time is that he is the fittest and freshest that he has ever been in his career. He only returned to Test cricket this February as he was serving a one-year ban. "I think its going to be a wonderful series. I think there'll be some good cricket and I think I'm bowling than I ever have in my life. My shoulder is strong and I'm rid of my finger injury and knee injury," he adds. Clash of the Titans In 1998, the Warne Vs. Tendulkar battle was watched by millions over the world and the contest went completely the batsman's way. While Warne believes that Sachin is the man to get, he has also decided to target Rahul Dravid during the series. "I'll be targeting Rahul Dravid. I think he's been India's most consistent player over the last 12 to 18 months and I've had little bit of success against Rahul," says the bowler. The 35-year-old bowler is hoping that he has a better series this time round as it could be the last time he plays a Test series in India. He also has a world record dangling in front of him. Warne needs six more wickets to break Sri Lankan bowler Muralitharan's current record of 532 Test wickets.