World Test Championship: India, England out to book spot in final against Blackcaps

The Blackcaps became the first team to qualify for the final of the test championship, and now India and England will battle for the right to take on the Kiwis at Lord's in June. 

India begin their final series in the competition at the top of the table and need to win by a margin of 2-1 or better to guarantee a place in the final. 

Joe Root's English team gave themselves a fighting chance of making the final on home turf by beating Sri Lanka 2-0 away from home last month, but their task will be difficult against Kohli's India, as they need to win at lest three tests to qualify. 

Australia's hopes of qualifying for the final also depend on this series. They need a drawn series or a narrow series win for England, or an India 1-0 win to reach Lords. 

India great Sachin Tendulkar thinks England's pace attack has the potential to trouble India with reverse swing, but expects Virat Kohli's men to come out on top in the four-test series.

The hosts are still on a high from their astonishing 2-1 series win in Australia, when an injury-stricken side scripted one of the greatest comebacks in the sport, after the humiliation of being bundled out for 36 in the opening test defeat in Adelaide.

"Given the squad that we have, a number of players have come back and they are fit," Tendulkar says. "One is obviously expecting India to beat England, because we have a very strong and balanced team.

"But England also did well in Sri Lanka, so it will be a good series, but India should be able to come out victorious."

India have lost only one of the last 35 matches they have hosted and boast a record 12 successive test series wins at home, including a 4-0 series victory during England's previous tour in 2016/17.

But England are the last team to have triumphed in India in 2012-13 and have arrived in the country, after blanking Sri Lanka.

Tendulkar predicts a good contest.

"England has a good bowling attack, with experienced bowlers and also backed by exuberance of youth," the 47-year-old says.

"But our batsmen are competent and totally capable of putting big totals on the scoreboard, which will allow the bowlers to put pressure on England batters. Right now the team is bubbling with confidence."

Some have questioned whether England's spin duo of Jack Leach and Dom Bess can trouble the hosts' vaunted batting line-up, but Tendulkar believes the fast bowlers could have a big role to play.