Steve Finn capped an excellent day with the ball by taking three wickets to help England to the brink of an emphatic victory over India in the third Test in Kolkata.

The Watford-born fast bowler, who had been undefeated on four in the tourists’ first innings total of 523 all out, took the scalp of opener Gautam Gambhir (40) as a rampant England attack claimed six for 36 after lunch. The hosts had reached 86 without loss before the break as they sought to make inroads into a deficit of 207.

Alastair Cook’s men continued to turn the screw after tea, with Finn claiming the wickets of Virat Kholi (20) and Zaheer Khan (0) to leave the Indians staring down the barrel at an embarrassing innings defeat.

However, a superb undefeated 83 from Ravichandran Ashwin helped the beleaguered home side to 239 for nine at the close, giving them a slender lead of 32 runs.

Finn, who took one for 73 in the first innings, ended day four with second innings figures of three for 37 from 17 overs as England moved to within touching distance of the win that will give them a 2-1 lead in the four-match series.