India series good preparation for Ashes: Nielsen

Dubai: India is always considered a tough opponent inside the sub-continent and visiting Australia coach Tim Nielsen feels the Test series, commencing Friday, would be a nice preparation for the high-octane Ashes series later this year.

"I think this series is a good preparation for us ahead of the Ashes. We`re playing in two great venues in Mohali and Bangalore where the wickets aren`t traditional from the first ball that is bowled," Nielsen said.

"Certainly Mohali will offer a bit more bounce and carry on the first days and we enjoy playing in Bangalore. It`s good to come off a break and into these games and looking ahead to where we`re going in the next few months which are important," Nielsen told ICC Cricket World audio show.

Nielsen also hoped that the India Test series, starting from tomorrow in Mohali, would be keenly contested one.

"We`re looking forward to the challenge of facing the number one team in the world. I think the number one ranking is something every team would like to achieve it would be a nice acknowledgement of our form if we can rise up the Test match rankings list but one step at the time," he said.

Meanwhile, South Africa women`s captain Cri-Zelda Brits said they are looking ahead to upcoming six-team ICC Cricket Challenge that will see the teams ranked fifth to 10th in the world play in an ODI and Twenty20 tournament.

"We`re really looking forward to the event especially as it`s like a home series for us. We`re very excited about the event as it`s the first time we`ll be competing in an event like this and it`s a good thing for us to measure ourselves as the lower-ranked sides against the top four teams in the world.”

"We`re all in high spirits and looking forward to hosting the five teams here," she said.


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