Taunton (Somerset), Jul 14: India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni today rued absence of Virender Sehwag in the first two Tests against England, saying the opener is one of the few players in the world who could influence the outcome of a game in a big way.
Sehwag, included in the squad of 17, is recovering from an operation on his right shoulder and in his absence young Chennai opener Abhinav Mukund will open the innings with Gautam Gambhir at least in the first two Tests.
“We, as a side, rely on our openers quite a bit. A good start helps our middle order capitalise on it. There aren't many cricketers in the world who impact a game like Sehwag does. We will miss him,” Dhoni said as India open the tour with a three-day game against Somerset from tomorrow.
Dhoni insisted that it was important for the openers to stand up to possibly the best international attack in the world. The Test series will begin at Lord's from July 21.
“England is a very good side, they regularly get plenty of runs. They take 20 wickets. We have to be at our very best,” he said.
The Indian captain did not allow himself to be weighed down by the fact that England, if winners by 2-0 in the series, could displace them as number one Test team in the world.
“The basis of sport is to enjoy it. A lot of times you don't enjoy sport while playing top class cricket. We don't want to get into it-the ratings aren't that important.” PTI