Stuart MacGill, the leg-spinner, who bowled to the likes of Virender Sehwag, Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, Sourav Ganguly and VVS Laxman in the 2003-04 Test series Down Under, reckons Australia's promising pace attack will face a more challenging time against the Indians than what New Zealand is providing them at the moment. "I hate teams talking about future opponents while they're still mid-series, but the sooner this series (vs NZ) is over, and Australia's young bowlers can start preparing for India, the better," wrote MacGill in the Sydney Morning Herald.
MacGill wrote: "Probably the biggest danger for the Australian team and spectators alike is that we might have misinterpreted the success of our young bowlers in the last couple of series. James Pattinson, Mitchell Starc and Nathan Lyon have all started their Test careers in exciting fashion and there's no doubt they'll have plenty more opportunities ahead. Bowling to Sachin and his mates at the SCG, MCG, Adelaide Oval and the WACA will be a completely different experience for them compared to New Zealand on a green-top (at Hobart)."
MacGill lauds India move
MacGill gave credit to India for sending some of their Test stars early to get acclimatised: "As Sehwag walked off the field in India, his Test teammates walked off the plane in Australia to prepare for the Boxing Day Test.
Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman have all enjoyed great success in Australia on past tours, and along with Sehwag, their arrival was a reminder of how much hard work lies ahead for our team."
MacGill played all the four Tests of the 2003-04 when regular leggie Shane Warne was serving his one-year ban after he tested positive for a banned diuretic during the 2003 World Cup. He took 14 wickets in the drawn series.
While touching upon Sehwag's recent double century against the West Indies at Indore, MacGill described how he was at the received end of the Delhi man's willow in the Boxing Day Test at Melbourne in 2003.
"During Steve Waugh's last series, he (Sehwag) hit me further and more often than even Brian Lara did. Something you might call a lofty goal. He showed all of our bowlers he didn't need to have a look at us before he took a swing."