Taunton, July 15: India's opening batsman Virender Sehwag is yet to recover from his shoulder injury and is likely to miss the first two Tests against England.
Sehwag, who underwent a shoulder surgery after the Indian Premier League (IPL), is supposed to join the team a fortnight later.
Coach Duncan Fletcher hoped the Delhi dasher would be fit for the third and the fourth Test.
"We've heard that he'll be over here for maybe the third and fourth Test, so we're crossing our fingers for that," Fletcher was quoted as saying by Cricinfo.
India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni admitted that Sehwag's absence would be a big loss for the team.
Dhoni, however, backed Abhinav Mukund to forge an effective partnership with Gautam Gambhir at the top of the order.
"As far as Virender Sehwag is concerned, there aren't many cricketers in the world who can have the impact he can. Of course, we'll miss him, but the good thing for Indian cricket is it gives a chance to a youngster like Mukund who can have a look at international cricket and see what areas he needs to improve.
"Viru will be back at some point, but it's good to have Gautam back as well."
"We are a side that relies on our openers quite a bit. If we get off to a good start, then we can really capitalise with the middle order we have," said Dhoni. IANS