|Sourav Ganguly believes India's fast bowlers hold the key to their three-Test series against England which gets underway at Lord's from Thursday.
Ganguly, a member of a powerful batting line-up that also includes captain Rahul Dravid and Sachin Tendulkar, reckons the likes of left-arm quicks Zaheer Khan and Rudra Pratap Singh can help India dismiss England twice.
But the former captain has been particularly taken by the impact of 24-year-old fast bowler Shanthakumaran Sreesanth, who since making his debut against England in Nagpur in March last year, has taken 37 wickets in eight Tests at a respectable average of just over 25 apiece.
"He's got pace, he swings it and he bowls in the right areas. He's a very good bowler. He runs in all the time and I think he will be the dark horse of the tour," said Ganguly.
Khan, a relative veteran at 28 and with 47 Tests behind him. After a season marred by rain, the Lord's pitch offer seam movement in a fashion more associated with the start of an English season than mid-July.
Last season he took 78 English County championship wickets for Worcestershire, second only to former Pakistan leg-spinner Mushtaq Ahmed at champions Sussex.
"Zaheer is probably bowling his best, he had a great season for Worcestershire last year and he's taken wickets since he's come back. IF RP can do a good job, we will be a handy bowling unit," Ganguly said.
And with experienced leg-spinner Anil Kumble also set to play India's bowlers are sure to provide England's batsmen, who gorged themselves on runs while defeating a moderate West Indies side 3-0 earlier in the season, with a decent examination.
That's all the more true following last year's away series win against the West Indies which saw India end a 20-year run without a Test campaign triumph outside of the sub-continent against a major nation.
England go into this series without key fast bowlers Stephen Harmison, who has a hernia injury, and Andrew Flintoff, sidelined with a recurrence of a longstanding ankle problem.
The home side are now set to decide between the uncapped duo of Stuart Broad and Chris Tremlett, both tall bowlers in the Harmison mould, and James Anderson for the final place in a four-man attack which is likely to be reliant again on spinner Monty Panesar both for control and wickets.
Broad, the son of former England opener Chris, would appear to be the leading candidate out of the three seamers on account of his batting.
Last weekend the 21-year-old Leicestershire quick took a career-best five for 76 against India while playing for England Lions, the national 'A side', at Chelmsford, having previously scored a fifty in the match.
"He's come off the back of a five-wicket haul and a fifty against India which is great for his confidence and belief," said England coach Peter Moores. "He's aggressive in how he bowls. He's also got a bit of pedigree as a batter. That's certainly an advantage."
Panesar, who snared Tendulkar for his first Test wicket, could end up anchoring England's attack if India get after the quicker bowlers and Moores said: "I know he's excited about the challenge of bowling against some of the Indian batters and he's moved forward very quickly over the last 12 months."
Ganguly too was full of praise for the left-armer, the first Sikh to play for England.
"Monty is doing very well in international cricket," said the former India skipper.
"He's a quality bowler and so is Matthew Hoggard but obviously they will miss Harmison and Flintoff."
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