India can leapfrog two places to the third spot in ICC rankings, if it wins the upcoming four-Test series against the visiting England side by a margin of 2-0 or more.
England, on the other hand, can retain its numero uno Test status if it manages to beat the host by 3-0 or even bigger margin.
England, which begins its pursuit of the first Test series win in India since 1984-85, lost the top spot to South Africa just a few months back.
However, the Alastair Cook led England team’s return to the top, will depend on some help from rival Australia.
If Australia wins against South Africa by a margin of 1-0, 2-0 or 2-1, then it would become the No. 1 ranked team. But England could displace Michael Clarke’s men from the top if it beats India by a margin of 3-0 or 4-0.
If the Australia-South Africa series is drawn level at 0-0 or 1-1, Graeme Smith’s side will retain the top spot. However, England could displace the South Africans if it can maintain the victory margin to 3-0 or 4-0 over India.
On the other hand, if South Africa was to win the series against Australia by a margin of 1-0 or better, England could, at best, hope to take the second position if it were to beat India.