Sehwag's 1st Test in Eng since 2002: Eng Chose bowl first

Tags: India tour of England - 2011, India v England 3rd Test at Birmingham - Aug 10-14, 2011, England, India

Published on: Aug 10, 2011

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The headline may look like a mistake, but it's true. When Virender Sehwag takes the field on day one of the third Test against England at Edgbaston on Wednesday, it will be his first Test appearance here since 2002.

The headline may look like a mistake, but it's true. When Virender Sehwag takes the field on day one of the third Test against England at Edgbaston on Wednesday, it will be his first Test appearance here since 2002.

The dashing opener, who had had a slump in form midway through the 2000s, was not picked for the 2007 series that India had gone on to win. His last Test against England was in the home series in 2008 when he had smashed them to all parts of park on day four of the Chennai Test as India chased a mammoth total to win the game.

Such has been Sehwag's presence and dominance at the top of the Indian order and in international cricket that his absence is an unbelievable thing. And despite the fact that he failed to get a big score in the two-day game against Northamptonshire, there's no denying his ability to run away with the game in a blink of an eye.

It was also in England during the 2002 series that Sehwag started to open the innings for India in Tests. He scored 237 runs in that four Test series in six innings including a fine 84 during the opening Test at Lord's.

Skipper MS Dhoni, who faces the ominous task of stopping England in their tracks to become the No. 1 Test ranked side ever since the ICC rankings were introduced, will surely be relieved to have Sehwag back in the side.

"He is a very dynamic player. He backs his instinct to play shots irrespective of which bowler he is facing. He believes more in seeing the ball and giving it the kind of treatment it deserves," Dhoni said on the eve of the match.

"We all know that an aggressive opener can have a very big impact on the opposition bowling attack. Sehwag is a very good player to have in the side," added Dhoni.

Sehwag has been a key player for India in the team's journey to the No. 1 spot. And now it's upto him again to keep the side from slipping down.

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