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Relishing my role

Posted in England team blog

After arriving in India on Monday I finally feel I have acclimatised to the conditions. The heat and humidity are just something you have to get used to. Even though I have been to India before, the first few days are always difficult.

The conditions aside, our preparations have gone very well. We have some young lads in the squad who want to impress but all the lads have been working really hard in the nets. Our training sessions have been at the same intensity as when we are back in England.

We have our first warm-up game tomorrow and I'm looking forward to that.

The match will be different with the new ICC ruling that two balls will be used per innings - one from each end. It'll be interesting to see how that pans out. I might be able to get the ball to move for longer during the early overs, but at the same time the ball will be harder at the death which might favour the batsmen. It's the same for both sides and it's not something I'm dwelling on.

I'm excited about being the leader of the attack with Jimmy and Broady not being here. I'm used to taking the new ball for England so in many ways my job isn't any different. Same old, same old. I might be one of the senior players but I still have to bowl well otherwise I'll be looking over my shoulder.

There are lots of talented bowlers coming through and I've been learning off them just as much as they have taken advice from me. There is strength in depth, just as there has been for the last 18 months. Having that competition is good for us bowlers - you know you have to perform - but it's also good for English cricket.


The heat and humidity have been tough since we arrived but that is just something you have to get used to when you come to India

Much gets made about bowling in India but the principles are pretty much the same. You have to bowl it straight and just short of a length. Any width against these players and it will travel. You can't bowl too full otherwise you'll get driven and anything too short will be cut or pulled. It's a fine line so it's important to be accurate.

The wickets are going to be flat but the pitches at home are pretty much the same these days.

We are approaching this series just like the recent one we had against India at home in that we want to be competitive and win every game. We start every series with that same mentality. We might have won the last series 4-0 but we are putting that to one side and starting again. It's going to be a challenge but we can take plenty of positives from the summer.

We haven't won an ODI series in India since 1984/85 - before I was born. We aren't taking much notice of that though. Rather than looking back at history we'll be concentrating on the 11 Indians we face on the field.