27th July 2011, 05:10 PM
Boycott and Donald back England in Test
Cricket legend Geoffrey Boycott, pictured, has said India's defeat by England in the first Test at Lord's marked the "beginning of the end" of their time as the world's number one Test team.
©AFP/File - Gerard Julien
LONDON (AFP) - Geoffrey Boycott has said India's defeat by England in the first Test at Lord's marked the "beginning of the end" of their time as the world's number one Test team.
England, who won the first Test by 196 runs, will replace India at the top of the ICC's Test Championship table if they win the ongoing four-match series by a margin of at least two Tests.
And former South Africa fast bowler Allan Donald believes Andrew Strauss's side "deserve" to be at the summit of Test cricket.
The second Test starts at Trent Bridge on Friday and Boycott, writing in the London Daily Telegraph, said the tourists' bowling was "not good enough to worry England".
Zaheer Khan, India's strike bowler, broke down early on at Lord's with a hamstring strain and is struggling to be fit for the second Test.
Former England opener Boycott was not surprised, saying: "Zaheer Khan is a quality bowler but even before the series started I never expected him to survive bowling in four Test matches in five weeks.
"His ability has never been in doubt but his fitness has always been a worry," he added.
"The great thing for England is they have two good back up seamers queuing up to take places.
"Tim Bresnan has done wonders when he has played. He has surprised me and probably deserved to play at Lord?s. And then there is Graham Onions who is back bowling for Durham and was a raving success against Australia in England.
"India do not have back up seamers like that and that is where England's advantage lies.
"Now they all have self-belief as well. They have confidence in each other and they also know if they don?t perform somebody else will get their place."
Meanwhile Donald, briefly England's bowling coach in 2007, told BBC Radio: "England deserve to be the number one, there's no question about it.
"They are a good side, they're progressing every game,"
Asked if their attack was the best in the world, Donald, who has since worked with New Zealand, replied: "There's no question.
"Chris Tremlett, (Stuart) Broad, (James) Anderson and Graeme Swann are fantastic. Then you've got a few more in the bank -- Tim Bresnan still in the wings.
"It's amazing how the guys have grown since 2007. Anderson has led the attack with absolute disdain."
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