Bengaluru, June 13: Afghanistan captain Asghar Stanikzai is disappointed not to be facing Virat Kohli in his side's Test debut, but says the entire India team is "special" like their captain.
Ajinkya Rahane will skipper India in Kohli's absence in Bangalore, as Stanikzai leads Afghanistan's first venture into the Test arena on Thursday (June 14).
The absence of star batsman Kohli could threaten to put a dampener on an historic occasion, but Stanikzai insists that will not be the case.
"Teams depend on 11 players, not one," he said.
"If Virat Kohli was here, it would have been more fun playing the Test, with the kind of experience he has and the manner in which he plays Test cricket.
"But if you see the India team, all of the players are Virat Kohli for us. For us, it's not that Virat Kohli is special or there is no one. Every Indian player is a Virat Kohli.
"They are all good players and have good experience in Test cricket."
Despite this, Stanikzai also believes India - the world's top-ranked side - can learn from playing against his side.
"India are number one in Test cricket and, especially when they play at home, they are amazing and it's really difficult to beat them in India," he said.
"But our efforts against India will be to play good cricket so that people enjoy the game. A win or loss is a different matter; whoever plays well will win.
"We will try to play good cricket. We will get to learn a lot from India. At the same time, India might also get to learn something from us. We will try to play better cricket than India in a positive way."