Sourav Ganguly is preparing his team to face a much improved England in today's day-night NatWest Series match at Chester-le-Street.

The India captain admits England have risen in his estimation as a one-day cricket force over the course of the last few months.

India lost a 3-1 lead over England to end up drawing the last one-day series between the two countries at the start of this year, and Ganguly's side now find themselves level on points with the hosts in the current triangular tournament also involving Sri Lanka.

Those facts were very much on Ganguly's mind as he assessed England's upward curve.

''I think there is a bit more quality in this side than what we saw in the World Cup,'' he said, reflecting on a tournament three years ago which saw England eliminated at the first stage after they lost to India at Edgbaston.

''Andrew Flintoff, for example, is turning out to be a good cricketer - something I am happy to see, having played for Lancashire with him.

''Marcus Trescothick is also a great find for England,'' he added.

Ganguly's opposite number Nasser Hussain has also impressed the Indians with the way he has led England in recent times.

''They are becoming a good one-day unit and Nasser is doing well as captain,'' he noted.

Ganguly traces England's resurgence in one-day cricket to that series in India back in January and February.

''They played pretty well then. We were in a position where we could have won in Delhi and Bombay but all credit to them for coming back.''

India will be taking nothing for granted either when it comes to their own form, even though they have begun this series most impressively with comfortable victories over England at Lord's and then Sri Lanka at The Oval last weekend.

''I was not surprised to see the way we played. But this is an early part of the tour; it is just the beginning, and there is a lot of cricket to be played,'' he cautioned.

''It is important we keep up our standards. The way the tournament is going we have a good chance of reaching the final and if we do I hope we are in the right shape to do well.''

India have a fully fit squad to choose from for today's match.