Swann and Anderson the Key Bowlers for England: Dravid

London, Jul 12 (IANS): India's middle-order batsman Rahul Dravid picked off-spinner Graeme Swann and pace spearhead James Anderson as the key bowlers for England in the eagerly-awaited cricket Test series beginning at Lord's next week.

"James Anderson has bowled really well. He's been the trump card. Obviously Graeme Swann is a top-class spinner. We first saw him in England bowling here last time and the boys rated him. He's come on leaps and bounds from then and has become one of their lead bowlers. Swann and Anderson are the key," Dravid was quoted as saying by The Cricketer.

Dravid, who averages over 65 in Tests in England, said Indian batsmen will look to be positive against Swann.

"He's an attacking bowler and that's one of the things that is different. He's not just looking to contain, he's looking to take wickets. He's not scared to toss the ball up and gets turn with good sideways spin. It will be a good contest against batsmen who are good players against spin, who will not be scared to take him on."

With India the top-ranked Test team in world cricket and England (3) keen to take over their mantle, Dravid recognises the significance of the forthcoming series.

"All series are important series. But this one is important because it's a series between two teams that have had good recent records, which gives it a bit more context. We won in England last time, so from that point of view England will want to do better this time", he said.

For India to repeat their series win of four years ago, Dravid says the fitness of their fast bowlers, led by Zaheer Khan and the resurgent Ishant Sharma, will be critical.

"It's a hard one to call. England are playing at home, so they have that advantage. We're a good side, a settled side, and we've been playing good cricket over the last couple of years. If we can keep our fast bowlers fit, then we'll be very competitive," he said.

Looking back over his 15 years as a Test player, Dravid said the highlight has been India's growth to become the world's best Test team.

"I'm really proud that India is the No.1 Test team. I've seen Indian cricket since 1996 and to be part of this journey and to see India become the No.1 Test team - not just for a short period of time because we've now been there for more than a year - it's something I'm very proud of," he said.


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