NOTTINGHAM, Aug 21: Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes provided stiff resistance as India endured a wicketless session against England, who reached 173 for 4 at tea on the fourth day of the third Test.
Buttler (67 batting) and Stokes (42 batting) added 111 runs for the fifth wicket after England were reduced to 62 for 4 in the opening session.
However India still have the upperhand as England need another 348 runs in their pursuit of 521.
Post lunch, Stokes and Buttler added 89 runs in the session but more importantly mixed caution with occasional aggression.
Ravichandran Ashwin (0-31) didn�t take the field immediately because of a hip niggle but came on after a brief delay. Mohammed Shami (1-38) was off at the start of this session as well, though the reason was unknown.
The batsmen were able to contend with Jasprit Bumrah (1-52) and Hardik Pandya (0-7) with minimum fuss.
Ashwin had a good contest with Stokes, but it was clearly visible that his pivot while bowling was being hampered by the hip issue. There was one loud appeal for leg before against Stokes in the 55th over, but the batsman was saved by umpire�s call.
Shortly afterwards, Buttler brought up his ninth Test half-century off 93 balls, as their partnership also breached the 100-mark off 195 balls before the break.
Earlier, England were reduced to 84-4 at lunch as Ishant Sharma (2-43) took two quick wickets in the first hour.
Starting from overnight 23 for no loss, the English openers didn�t stay for long, as they had no answer to Ishant�s probing line and length.
SCORECARD (at lunch)
India 1st Innings: 329
England 1st Innings: 161
India 2nd Innings: 352 for 7 decl
England 2nd Innings: (target: 521 runs, overnight: 23 for no loss): Alastair Cook c Rahul b Sharma 17, Keaton Jennings c Pant b Sharma 13, Joe Root c Rahul b Bumrah 13, Ollie Pope c Kohli b Mohammed Shami 16, Ben Stokes not out 3, Jos Buttler not out 19. Extras: (LB-2, NB-1) 3. Total: (for 4 wickets in 35 overs) 84. Fall of wickets: 1-27, 2-32, 3-62, 4-62. Bowling: Jasprit Bumrah 12-5-26-1, Ishant Sharma 9-1-24-2, Ravichandran Ashwin 4-2-4-0, Mohammed Shami 8-3-28-1, Hardik Pandya 2-2-0-0. � PTI