Stuart Broad enjoyed a superb weekend with bat and ball to help England set India a record run chase of 458 to win the 2,000th Test.
After coming in for criticism for his form and dropped from the one-day team, the Notts star kept his place for this first Test at Lord's.
And on Saturday he returned figures of 4-37 as India were shot out for 286.
Then yesterday he scored an unbeaten 74 as Matt Prior smashed 103 not out in a vital seventh-wicket stand after England were rocking at 62-5 before lunch.
It saw England declare on 269-6 with more than two hours of play left yesterday, when Broad took another wicket before the close of play.
No side has ever successfully chased more than 344 to win a Lord's Test, and India's problems were further complicated by fitness concerns over three players.
Rules prevented Sachin Tendulkar batting higher than seven after a viral infection kept him from fielding until after tea, while Zaheer Khan (hamstring) and opener Gautam Gambhir – who was taken to hospital after being hit on the elbow at short-leg – were also concerns.
Broad dug out a yorker first up and survived well as the lead ticked past 300.
The all-rounder grew in confidence with a muscular pull off Sharma and then had a slice of luck when he edged between keeper and slip for four.
Prior made his half-century before tea and Broad eventually followed after surviving an lbw appeal from Harbhajan, which replays showed would have hit.
Taking the lead past 400 was the pair's cue to cut loose and Prior raced to his ton with a flurry of boundaries – including a massive six – before being waved back to the pavilion by captain Andrew Strauss.
In reply, India finished the day 80-1, needing 378 runs today with nine wickets to spare.
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