London: England won the toss and elected to bat in the decisive fourth and final Test against India here at The Oval on Thursday.
India made one change from the side that won the third Test at Headingley by an innings and 46 runs with wicket-keeper Ajay Ratra replacing teenage stumper Parthiv Patel, who has a knee injury. England made two changes, opening batsman Marcus Trescothick recalled in place of Kent novice Robert Key even though the Somerset left-hander only returned to action last weekend after being out since July with a broken thumb. And Dominic Cork took the place of fellow all-rounder Andrew Flintoff, who is out with a hernia surgery.
India's win at Headingley levelled the series at one apiece and victory here will give it its first Test series triumph out of the sub-continent in 16 years since it beat England 2-0 in 1986. This match sees India star batsman Sachin Tendulkar, 29, becoming the youngest player in cricket history to appear in 100 Tests.
England: Marcus Trescothick, Michael Vaughan, Mark Butcher, Nasser Hussain (captain), John Crawley, Alec Stewart (wicket-keeper), Dominic Cork, Alex Tudor, Ashley Giles, Andrew Caddick and Matthew Hoggard.
India: Sanjay Bangar, Virender Sehwag, Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, Saurav Ganguly (captain), Venkatsai Laxman, Ajit Agarkar, Ajay Ratra (wicket-keeper), Anil Kumble, Harbhajan Singh and Zaheer Khan.
Umpires: Asoka de Silva (Sri Lanka), David Orchard (South Africa).
Third umpire: Neil Mallender (England).
Match referee: Clive Lloyd (West Indies).