India tour toughest in my career, says Clarke

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Updated: Wednesday, February 13, 2013, 14:31 [IST]
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Touring India is extremely tough: Clarke

Sydney, Feb 13: Australia skipper Michael Clarke before leaving Sydney on Tuesday said that India series would be the toughest in his cricketing career and it would be difficult to regain the Border-Gavaskar trophy.

Michael Clarke termed touring India as the toughest challenge of his career as it would be difficult to regain the Border-Gavaskar trophy, before leaving Sydney on Tuesday.

Clarke's men will be without Michael Hussey and Ricky Ponting during this as the two have retired from Test cricket. With the current team failing to perform well against Board President's XI in the first warm-up game, it has further increased the team's woes ahead of an important Test series against India.

Australians failed to tackle uncapped Parvez Rassol, as the Kashmir-born allrounder picked 7 wickets on the first day of the warm-up match at Chennai on Tuesday.

Clarke before leaving Sydney on Tuesday, told that the upcoming series against India was the tougest challenge of his life.

"Touring India is as tough a challenge as I've had in my career. Every time I've been there on a Test tour it's been extremely difficult, hence the Australian team hasn't won that much over there. So it's a huge challenge, the players know that," Clarke told agencies on Tuesday.

Since Australia haven't been successful against India in India, having won only once in 43 years, skipper Clarke suggested that preparation ahead of such an important series was a must and decided to send a few players early to get acclimatized to the conditions and also get some match practice.

"That's partly why we're trying to prepare as well as we can by sending players early to get them used to conditions, to give ourselves the best chance. We know it's going to be tough, we know how good India is, but we look forward to it," Clarke said.

"Ed, like Davey Warner, had a really good summer and put their hand up against the No.1 test team in the world, so I think it's a really positive sign that we've got so many options in our squad,'' Clarke said Tuesday as he prepared to leave for India.

Michael Clarke who had not been impressive the previous time he toured the sub-continent, said "What I've learned in the past is how important preparation is for my personal performance. I need to make sure I've done all my training to give myself the best chance of scoring runs."


Story first published:  Wednesday, February 13, 2013, 12:59 [IST]
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