England on threshold of comprehensive victory in Kolkata Test

London, Dec 8(ANI): England is on the verge of a comprehensive win over India in the third Test after ripping through the home side's top order on the fourth day of the Kolkata Test.

Chasing 207 to make England bat again, India raced to 86-0 at lunch, but Graeme Swann bowled Virender Sehwag to spark a collapse in which India lost six wickets for 36 runs.

The tourists looked certain to wrap up an innings win, only for Ravichandran Ashwin (83) to steer India to 239-9 at the close, a slender lead of 32 runs.

Ashwin's superb cameo, which featured partnerships of 38 with Ishant Sharma and and an unbroken 42 with Pragyan Ojha, spared India the ignominy of an innings defeat and took the match into a fifth day to the delight of a raucous home crowd.

However England will be confident of finishing the job on Sunday to take a 2-1 lead in the series with one match to play.

The tourists had earlier failed to build on their overnight position of 509-6 as India enjoyed a near-perfect opening session, the BBC reports.

Swann nicked his first ball of the day to slip and Prior was caught behind trying to run Zaheer down to third man.

India carried the momentum into their batting performance as Sehwag sprinted to 49 off 56 balls and Gambhir smashed Panesar for a six and four in the last over before lunch to leave the hosts only 121 runs behind with all 10 wickets intact.

But Swann's removal of Sehwag swung the balance and set England on course for a win that would leave them needing only a draw in the fourth Test in Nagpur for a first series victory in India since 1985. (ANI)