October 7, 2008

Warne's words of comfort

Nishi Narayanan
A baffled and bemused Warne searches for a way to break the deadlock, Australia v England, 2nd Test, Adelaide, December 2, 2006
 © Getty Images

Shane Warne has offered some words of comfort to Australia's young spinners, Jason Krejza and Cameron White, as they prepare for a baptism of fire against India.

White appears to be favourite to make his debut in Bangalore, with the prospect of bowling at a line-up including Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, Virender Sehwag and Sourav Ganguly.

"Even I found it tough in India, and I'd like to think I was one of the better spinners around," Warne said. "It took us [Australia] a number of years to learn how to play out there. On the last trip I took 14 wickets in three matches and missed the last game on a bunsen when Michael Clarke took 6 for 9. I may have got one or two then.

"You can bowl to the Indians, but if you don't bowl well you will get smashed everywhere. But it's a little different now, there's a few of those guys coming to the end of their careers and not at their most confident. However, they are still the best players of spin."

At some point over the next few weeks Ricky Ponting will look around his field and wish he could call on Warne. It has been asked before whether a shock comeback would ever be a possibility, but again Warne said it was highly unlikely.

"At the moment I’m happily retired.” he said. “They don’t need me. I don’t think the call will come. If it does I’ll weigh it up, but I’m very happy. I haven’t got time to play Test cricket."

Nishi Narayanan is a staff writer at ESPNcricinfo

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