Cook backs bowlers to shine in India

September 24, 2012
Cricket - International Cricket - Bet Now at Bet365

Alastair Cook believes England can overcome the loss of senior men Andrew Strauss and Kevin Pietersen to win his first series as Test captain.

Not since 1984-85 have England won a Test series in India - a daunting statistic to challenge for the 27-year-old in his first assignment.

However, he retains confidence despite the top-six makeover - Ian Bell will also be missing for the second Test of four due to paternity leave - because the bowling unit proved themselves adept in Asian conditions against Pakistan and Sri Lanka earlier this year.

"With the talent we have in the team we are a dangerous side. We are very strong on our bowling and, when we became world number one, Andrew Strauss said winning in the sub-continent was the next real challenge for us," Cook said.

"At the top of that was taking 20 wickets in those conditions. When we had the opportunity in those conditions in the UAE and in Sri Lanka we did it and did it well.

"That has given us the confidence in our bowling that we can adapt to those conditions, and the guys involved are still the same that were involved there.

"I am not saying it's going to be easy but we can look back with some confidence.

"Our challenge will be to score big, heavy runs in the first innings and exert scoreboard pressure. When we won in Australia, and against India in England, we got big first innings scores and that puts huge pressure on the opposition - we know on the subcontinent that's crucial."

Cook made his Test debut in India in 2006, scoring a hundred on debut in Nagpur but missed England's only win there in the last 27 years when he went down with a stomach bug on the eve of the final match in Mumbai.

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