New Delhi, Dec 25: India's pace spearhead Mohammed Shami has deep respect for India's limited overs' skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
As per the UP-born Bengal pacer, who was ruled out of the Indian Test squad after sustaining injury in his right knee during the third Test against England at Visakhapatnam, said MS Dhoni is like a father figure to him.
In an interview to Times of India, the 26-year-old star pacer revealed about his bonding with team mates and that he was made to feel at home in the dressing room.
As per Shami he was accepted by the teammates despite his initial inhibitions due to lack of knowledge in English.
"I remember the first time I walked into this team. It's a ritual that whoever makes it to the Indian team for the first time has to make a speech. I was a little nervous. Most cricketers have a very active social life and mine was completely different, coming from where I do. I remember walking up and saying something to the effect that 'I can't speak in English so it'll have to be in Hindi'. And the guys were like 'toh isme kya baat hai' (what is the big deal in that). That whole feeling of being accepted so immediately was amazing. As far as MS (Dhoni) is concerned, it's like a father-son relationship. What more can I say," he was quoted as saying.
Shami has been ruled out of the upcoming ODI and T20I series against England, starting January 15. He at present is recuperating from his injury in Bengaluru.
The 26-year-old pacer, who is still recovering, will be out of action for at least a month owing to the injury.
Shami has had an injury-prone international career so far. He has spent more time recuperating or nursing injuries than playing cricket.
Last ODI Shami that played was in the semi-final of World Cup 2015 against Australia at Sydney. India lost that game after winning 6 consecutive matches.
As per reports, Delhi pacer Ishant Sharma will be given a chance in the Indian team in Shami's place while veteran seamer Ashish Nehra is also in the contention for the limited overs' series.
Nehra had an impressive 2016 but missed out the ODI rubber against New Zealand due to injury. Team India is going through a spate of injuries as several players were ruled out of the squad during England series.