Warne: England need Cook

England suffered a devastating 5-0 loss in the last series and Alastair Cook was dropped as captain of the World Cup side in December.

With upcomign summers series at home and Cook having scored his first Test century in two years, albeit against an understrength St Kitts outfit, all bode well for England to mount a challenge to World Cup winners Australia.

???England need Alastair Cook performing as captain and more importantly as an opening batsman,??? Warne told Sky Sports News HQ.

???That???s where all the problems started last year with England. When he wasn???t making runs that affected everything: the way the tame played, their success, and they went to Australia and lost 5-0.

???For England fans, they want to see Alastair Cook back making runs. That will rub off on his captaincy, he???ll play well and the team will respond to that too.

???The first innings in that first Test is so crucial to setting the tone for the rest of the series, so fingers crossed for Alastair Cook.???

England had a woeful World Cup and will hope to turn around their form and boost their confidence in the three-match Test series against the West Indies.

A win in the West Indies would be the best way to prepare for the first home series against new Zealand and then the much-awaited Ashes, says Warne.

???They???re playing a depleted West Indies side so they should be able to beat them comfortably ??? that???s what they should be able to do,??? he said.

???And then the Ashes – England always play better in their own conditions so it???s definitely going to be more completive than 5-0. I think England will fancy their chances of winning.

???For me, it???s a lot about fitness: if a lot of the players stay fit, Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad have to be 100 per cent fit. ??They had poor world cups so they???ll look forward to getting the red ball back

???If they perform well, take 20 wickets in the test match arena, the top order fires with Jonathan Trott back, Alastair Cook, then it???s going to be a very competitive ashes series.

???But Australia are going to be tough to beat, that???s for sure.???