Chennai: Despite the retirement of Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman and India's recent Test series defeats, Australian wicketkeeper Matthew Wade believes the hosts still are a very difficult team to beat at home.
Wade said though Australia doesn't need to bowl to the likes of Dravid and Laxman anymore, India still have plenty of "experienced" players and they will have to really work hard to tame the hosts during the four-Test series. "They (Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman) are class players and champion players for India. We do not have to get them out twice in every test," Wade said when asked about absence of the two greats from the Indian squad. "However, the guys in the present Indian team are very good batters. They are very experienced especially playing at home conditions. We need to work hard in the next ten or fifteen days and really get ready to go for the first test match," he added.
The 25-year-old believes that their pace attack could spring up suprises for the home side on tracks that are not suited for such bowling. "I saw a little bit of England's matches when they toured here last. Especially in their last match the quick bowlers took lot of wickets. We have a great fast bowling attack going along with a couple of spinners. I am sure the quick bowlers have a great job to do in India as well," the lone wicketkeeper in the Australian squad said.
Wade hoped that his side will have a good outing in the two practice games to get used to the humidity before the opening Test begins on February 22 here. "To bat for a long time would be better for our batters on such tough conditions like the humidity, the heat and the wickets. Peter Siddle and James Pattinson have not bowled much in the last few months. So to get some overs under the games scenario would be good for us," Wade said.
Verbal duels have always been a part of a India-Australia series over the years and Wade feels sparks could fly during the upcoming series as the contest would be evenly matched and both side will give their best. "A few of our fast bowlers have got white-line fever so they don't plan too much for these things. They just walk out on the ground. India compete hard and so do we. I think that's why over the years there have been so many tough contests. Both teams will go as hard as they can on the field but I'm sure after the game everything will be fine," Wade said.
On keeping wickets in India, Wade said: "It is going to be tough keeping wickets in India. I have been working hard during the last four weeks. I have two games before the first Test match. "No doubt it is tough place to keep wickets but I will get used to the conditions from the two practice games. I have been told lot of stories and I am looking forward to the challenge."