Steyn backs England ahead of India Test series

England's James Anderson celebrates wicket (Getty Images)
England's James Anderson celebrates wicket (Getty Images)
TEAMtalk Media

Cape Town - Proteas fast bowler Dale Steyn expects India to push England hard in their upcoming five Test match series, but feels the hosts have the edge in familiar conditions.

READ: Steyn in favour of doing away with toss

Steyn, who played only a role in the first Test when India toured South Africa earlier this year and lost 2-1, agreed with the point of view, saying that Virat Kohli's India are "capable of anything".

"Led by Virat, this Indian team is capable of anything. I know Virat pretty well. He’s quite a determined character. Five Test matches is going to be good for one team and if one team gets on a roll the other team will be blown away," said Steyn, as quoted by the ICC's website.

"It's going to be a hard-fought Test series. The England bowlers are a little bit more skilled and that's where the difference will be ... that will be the tipping point.

"India do rely heavily on their spinners and they do a great job in one-day cricket. At the moment, the wickets are pretty flat (in England) and there hasn't been a lot of turn, especially in the four-dayers in county cricket. So they're going to rely on their fast bowlers. And if they don't have them, then they're in trouble," said the Proteas fast bowler.

The last time England and India played Test cricket, India won 4-0, but that was in India in late 2016.

India, who are the No 1 Test team, have won a Test series in England only thrice - 1971, 1986 and 2007.

"The advantage probably lies with England, obviously being at home and with such a long tour, it tends to become very long. India have been there for ODIs and are a very good touring team now. If I put my money, I will probably put it on England. But it is going to be tight," Steyn said.

"These are conditions that England are used to. Home series generally goes away with home sides."

The first England v India Test will start at Edgbaston on Wednesday.

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