New Delhi: Virender Sehwag believes in letting his bat do the talking, and hopes to be among runs in the series against England that will also see him touch the 100-Test landmark.
A fluent century against Uttar Pradesh, in which he struck 19 fours, could be the right tonic, but Sehwag is not looking too much into it.
“When I started, my dream was to play for India. When I played for India, everybody started saying that I have the talent, and if I work hard and remain fit I should be able to play 100 Tests. So then it was the dream to play 100 Tests. I am happy that I will be fulfilling that dream. Hopefully, I will deliver in the England series,” said Sehwag, who is two short of 100 Tests.
We don’t have revenge on mind for England series: Sehwag
One of the major worries for India ahead of the England series is Sehwag’s form, and his opening partnership with Gautam Gambhir.
Sehwag faced these concerns with the nonchalance he brings to the crease.
“I am happy to score a hundred against Uttar Pradesh, but disappointed that we could not draw the match,” he said.
Asked whether he thought he was back in form with the century, Sehwag tersely responded: “That is for you to judge.” He batted with an injured finger during his century. “It is much better now,” Sehwag said at an event of Jabong.com, an online portal for fashion and lifestyle shopping.
The four-Test rubber starting in Ahmedabad on November 15 is being labelled as a revenge series and it is said that nothing less than a 4-0 whitewash would satisfy the Indian team which lost by a similar margin in England.
Sehwag said winning the series is the priority.
“England is a good side. Many of us played first-class cricket to prepare for the series. It will be a tough series and it will not be easy for England either. We are eagerly waiting for it to start."
“I can’t talk about revenge. Those are terms used by the media. For us, it is important to play well and win the series.” For that to happen, Sehwag will need to fire and provide the platform for a big total. His last Test century came two years ago against New Zealand.
However, it is never advisable to write Sehwag off. Last time when he was dropped from the side, he came back with a string on big scores in 2008, which included a triple ton in Chennai against South Africa.
“I always rate that triple century (319) higher than the first one (against Pakistan in Multan in 2004). It was an important series. I was making a comeback to the Test team. The bowling and the conditions were difficult. It showed that Virender Sehwag was not finished yet,” he said.
It was after that innings that SG Cricket launched a collection of bats named after him (VS319).
That collection, comprising four different ranges, will now be exclusively retailed through Jabong.com.
In the past, Sehwag has spoken about his desire to bat in the middle order, and with the selectors choosing an extra opener in Murali Vijay in the squad he was asked whether he would like to come down the order. “I will not ask the team management to tinker with the batting order. It is not for the player to decide.” He is, however, happy to have represented Delhi after a long time, though his century could not save the star-studded team from losing their Ranji opener.
Asked why star players return to domestic cricket only when they find themselves out of form, Sehwag said: “I can only speak about myself. Whenever I get a chance, I play domestic matches. You have to see that it is a four-match series and the body also needs proper rest. I think it has happened for the first time that there was first-class cricket before a Test series, otherwise it happens after a Test series.”