David Warner has cautioned against sledging Virat Kohli when India embark on a tour of Australia later this year comprising four Tests, three ODIs and three T20Is.
Likening his aggressive mindset to Kohli's style of play, Warner believed the Indian skipper had the fire in his belly to excel in the face of taunts.
Kohli was the leading run-getter for his team during India's Test tour of Australia back in 2014/15 where he made his debut as the captain of the side. The star player's astronomical contribution of 692 runs across the series came amidst heated verbal banter out in the middle.
Keen to avoid getting Kohli all riled up and launch a batting assault once again, Warner declared his intention to steer clear of mocking his counterpart.
"I thrive on the crowd, I thrive on people sort of going at me in the field. And getting into that battle," Warner told India Today.
"I think Virat is quite similar, if you go a little bit at Virat he comes out harder with the bat and he plays amazing. We have seen that time and time again.
"There is no point in actually trying to poke the bear because at the end of the day if you do that it just fires up the person a bit more."
Last year, Kohli's men made history when India became the first Asian side to win a Test series in Australia.
However, India benefitted from the enforced absence of Warner and Steve Smith, both of whom were serving a one-year ball-tampering ban at the time of the series.
Warner, who struck a glorious triple ton against Pakistan during the Australian home summer, said he was now looking forward to the challenge of locking horns with a strong Indian team.
"It's a much-anticipated return to Australia for India. I am excited, one to be selected and to be a part of that. Last time we were not bad but were beaten by a good team and their bowling was relentless."
"Now, India has got the best batting line-up and our bowlers will like to target them."
Warner also commented on the doubts over the fate of the T20 World Cup in Australia this year and remarked that he was awaiting a final decision on the tournament by the ICC.
Nevertheless, the Sunrisers Hyderabad skipper maintained that he was open to the possibility of the Indian Premier League replacing the T20 World Cup if the pandemic lingers.
"The challenges around getting every single nation that participates in the World Cup into Australia, given the fact that we have the quarantine for 14 days... we have to obviously abide by those rules and obviously we await the decision from the ICC," Warner said.
"I am definitely sure and positive that we [Australian players] will be able to come and play in the IPL if that replaces the World Cup schedule," he added.