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Edwards ready for India Test

By Callum Dent

Skipper Charlotte Edwards insists England will be fully prepared for the challenge of India in the solitary Kia Women’s Test.

The hosts kick-start their summer schedule tomorrow at Wormsley against an Indian side that has not played in this format for eight years.

Turning professional at the start of May has given England the luxury of preparing thoroughly for their third Test in the last 12 months, according to Edwards.

She told the ECB audioboo: “We are more than ready to start tomorrow. We have been training hard for the last couple of months. We are chomping at the bit to get out there and get playing some international cricket again.

“We have always liked to think we have prepared as thorough as we can and as professional as we can.

“We have now been able to have the time. To have that time week-on-week with our coaches and my time with the players has been really key.

“Hopefully it is going to make a huge difference, especially in the long run. It’s hard to think in two months it will make too much of a difference, but this is the best I’ve seen a team prepare for a tour. 

“I guess the proof will be in the pudding in terms of our performances over the next three weeks.”

England are well accustomed to the surroundings at Wormsley after drawing with Australia at the venue during last summer’s Ashes.

Having also followed up a stalemate with a stunning victory in Perth on the return leg Down Under, Edwards believes those experiences will stand her squad in good stead.

“It’s always nice to play as much Test cricket as you can,” Edwards said.

“With India, you have got some world-class players there and will adapt to all formats pretty easily.

“The kind of experiences we have had over the last 12 months, in terms of our cricket and the situations we have been in, will help our young players. 

“They will have a lot of debutants, having not played for eight years. It is all set up for a great Test match. One I am looking forward to.”

Although India have been inactive in the Test arena since 2006, they were handed the opportunity to acclimatise to English conditions with a two-day friendly against the England Women’s Academy at Loughborough University last week.

And Edwards is wary of the threat they pose, with players such as Mithali Raj and Jhulan Goswami in their ranks.

Edwards added: “She (Raj) is (a key wicket) in every format of the game.

“Whenever we play India, her record speaks for itself and I have been in the field for a long time when Mithali has batted in Test cricket.

“Hopefully we can put that right tomorrow. They are a team we won’t underestimate.

“With Goswami with the ball and Raj with the bat, and some of their younger players who have performed well over the last 12 months, they are a real threat. Hopefully in our conditions we will get the edge.”

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