"Sachin is just a class above everybody else because of the way he judges the line length of a bowler and the way he conducts himself on the pitch," says the spin wizard.
In an interview to a section of the Indian media, Warne says the current Indian team is a "bit tougher" than the previous ones and can make it to the top spot but Sachin's role is crucial to the team's success. "I think they can challenge for the number one title in the world, only if Sachin remains fit."
The Aussie says best Indian team that he played against was way back in 1991.
But the former Test cricketer doesn't buy into the observations that his country's dominance in world cricket is on the decline. "I think Australia is going through a change in period and India is always hard to beat in India. Australia were in a position to win 3/nil against SA recently, but lost the series, but there are signs early in 2009 that Australia will be a very strong team."
About Australia's defeat in their series against India in India, the Aussie says, "India just outplayed Australia and were a better team, there is no disgrace in that."
But aren't the world champions' recent performances a bit under par? Warne doesn't agree. "I think they're playing excellent cricket, other sides are just catching up."