The last time India won a Test series in England was in 2007 when the Rahul Dravid led team defeated England 1-0. However, the previous two tours have been an embarrassment for Team India as they lost 0-4 in 2011 and 1-3 in 2014, both times under MS Dhoni.
This time, however, Team India will be led by their new skipper Virat Kohli and former England player Allan Lamb is backing India to come good this time and win the series.
"According to me, India will start as the favorites going into the series. I expect the conditions to be in their favour as the series unfolds. It has not rained here much in the last few weeks. This will result in wickets being on the drier side and that should bring the Indian spinners into play. I am sure the curators will water it sufficiently, but the sunny conditions will dry the wickets which should help India," Lamb told TOI on Monday.
Allan Lamb, who played 79 Tests and 122 ODIs for England in a decade-long career, was impressed by the young chinaman Kuldeep Yadav. India has chosen three spinners in their 18-man squad, with R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja the other two spinners along with Kuldeep.
"I am impressed with Kuldeep as he brings variety to the Indian bowling line-up. Yes, Joe Root and a few others did read him in the one-dayers, but I would want to still see him in action in the Tests. He and Ashwin will be a good combination to go with," said Lamb.
Lamb, one of the best English players of spin, advised England on how to counter the Indian spinners. "You can't just walk in thinking of only employing a particular shot such as the sweep. The trick is to use your feet as much as possible to get runs and be patient. England will depend on Root and the experienced Alastair Cook to do the majority of scoring while others like Jos Buttler, Jonny Bairstow and Ben Stokes too are capable of scoring those crucial runs for the side," he said.
With Cheteshwar Pujara, R Ashwin and Ishant Sharma coming off county stints, Lamb said, "It's a big plus when you feature in county cricket. As a bowler you would know the lengths to bowl to, and as a batsman you learn to make those minute adjustments needed to score runs on English pitches."
"Ishant is coming after having had a good county stint. On the other hand, Jasprit Bumrah, Umesh Yadav and Mohd Shami are capable of bowling with pace and conditions will help them get some swing as well. It will be interesting to see how the English quicks - James Anderson and Stuart Broad - shape up considering they are returning from injuries," he said when asked about the absence of Bhuvneshwar Kumar.
"I would go with a 3-1 scoreline in favour of India. There may be an odd draw but I do see India winning the series," Lamb predicted the scoreline.