England warrant top spot over India - Allan Donald

England celebrate the dismissal of Sachin Tendulkar on day five of the first Test
England remain unbeaten in Test cricket in 2011

South Africa pace legend Allan Donald says England deserve to overtake India as the number one Test-playing nation.

India currently top the rankings but will be replaced by England if Andrew Strauss's men win the ongoing four-Test series by two matches or more.

"England deserve to be the number one, there's no question about it," Donald told BBC Radio 5 live.

"They are a good side, they're progressing every game. They're progressing as a really good unit."

England lead the series 1-0 after a 196-run victory in the first Test at Lord's.

Kevin Pietersen's first-innings 202 not out earned him the man of the match award, while Matt Prior hit an unbeaten 103 in the second.

But it was the bowlers who particularly caught Donald's eye as a previously out-of-sorts Stuart Broad returned match figures of 7-94 and James Anderson weighed in with 7-152.

When asked if England possessed the best pace attack in the world at present, Donald replied: "There's no question.

"Chris Tremlett, Broad, 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, Broad has gone through a few ups and downs of late.

"It's good to see him really back and firing, bowling really well with a lot of aggression too.

"It's nice to know you've got this current crop who are playing and you've also got a few youngsters in the wings as well.

Donald, who took 330 Test and 272 one-day international wickets and briefly worked with England's bowlers in 2007, felt India were "ripe for the picking" at Lord's but feels they will definitely respond, with the second Test starting at Trent Bridge on Friday.

"India will find a way and [coach] Duncan Fletcher will dig very, very deep to his charges," the 44-year-old added. "This is a wake-up call to them.

"Number one is number one but it might not be for very long. They will come back. [Pace bowler] Zaheer Khan is key to their success.

"If he's fit and raring to go [after a hamstring injury], he might have a bit to say in the second Test."

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