BIRMINGHAM (AFP) - Alastair Cook's career-best 294 laid the platform for England to beat India at Edgbaston and so replace the tourists as the world's best Test side. Cook's dominating display led England to a massive first innings total of 710 for seven declared on the third day of the third Test on Friday. It was England's best in Tests for 73 years and their third highest of all-time behind their 903 for seven declared against Australia at The Oval in 1938 and 849 against the West Indies at Kingston in 1930. England's day then got better still when India lost Virender Sehwag for his second first ball nought of the match, the recalled opener completing a 'king pair' when he edged a drive off James Anderson to home skipper Andrew Strauss at first slip. India were 35 for one at stumps -- still needing 451 more runs just to make England bat again. Fit-again opener Gautam Gambhir was 14 not out and veteran Rahul Dravid 34 not out. It all left England superbly placed to go an unbeatable 3-0 up in this four-match series and secure a win that would see them replace India at the top of the ICC's Test Championship table. Cook's marathon innings of 12 hours 47 minutes, just half an hour short of the England record set by Len Hutton when making 364 against Australia at The Oval in 1938, saw him face 545 balls with 33 boundaries. Remarkably, Cook had made just 20 runs in four previous innings this series. England resumed Friday on 456 for three in reply to India's 224. Cook was 182 not out and Eoin Morgan, dropped twice off easy chances Thursday, 44 not out. Cook's legside clip for two off fast bowler Shathakumaran Sreesanth took the 26-year-old to his second Test double century. Essex's Cook, 206 not out at lunch, stroked leg-spinner Amit Mishra through the covers for a three to surpass his previous Test best of 235 not out against Australia in Brisbane in November. Morgan's single off Mishra then got him to his second Test hundred, off 188 balls with 10 fours, following the former Ireland international's 130 against Pakistan at Trent Bridge last year. But Morgan fell soon afterwards when, on 104, he drove loosely at the gentle spin of Suresh Raina and was held in the covers by Sehwag. His exit ended a fourth-wicket stand of 222 with fellow left-hander Cook. But Cook, who went 137 balls between boundaries on Friday, ploughed on to post 250. Meanwhile Bresnan, following up from his 90 in England's 319-run second Test win at Trent Bridge, took England past 700, and himself to a 72-ball fifty, with a magnificent six over long-on off paceman Ishant Sharma.