Schedule suits England - Strauss

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Former England captain Andrew Strauss believes the current side will benefit from their lengthy preparation time ahead of the four-Test series with India.

England, who fly out later this week, are scheduled to play three warm-up matches prior to the first Test in Ahmedabad starting on November 15.

Strauss, who retired from professional cricket at the end of England’s last five-day assignment - a 2-0 Investec series defeat at the hands of South Africa, feels a prolonged period of acclimatisation can only help the tourists.

Andrew Strauss

Andrew Strauss progresses to a century at Chennai in 2008. He believes England will be "as ready as they ever have been before" when they take on India in four Tests later this year

“I think it is a benefit, particularly in a place like India where you have to make quite major adjustments to your technique. The more preparation time you have got, the better,” he told Sky Sports News.

“I think they’ll be as ready as they ever have been before, which is a good starting point, although it obviously doesn’t guarantee anything.”

A training camp in Dubai will precede England’s arrival in India, where they have not claimed a series victory since 1985.

“When you are trying to prepare to go on a tour to India, being indoors at Loughborough or at your county is not ideal preparation,” Strauss added.

“I know the guys are going to Dubai for a couple of days and hopefully they’ll be able to get their heads around the challenges they are likely to encounter in India.

“It’s a huge challenge; I don’t think anyone’s denying that, but at the same time it’s an exciting one because it’s not a place that a lot of non sub-continental sides go and win, and England have got the opportunity to go and do that.”

Ever the diplomat, Strauss declined to offer an opinion on who should replace him at the top of the order next month.

“Thankfully those decisions aren’t mine any more. I can relax, let my hair grow back and not have to agonise over those questions too much,” he said with a smile.

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