Ollie Pope's diligent unbeaten 74 helped England eclipse India's first-innings total of 191 on day two of the fourth test at the Oval on Friday.

The hosts looked in dire straits at 62-5 but Pope added 89 runs with Jonny Bairstow and 71 with Moeen Ali to steer them to 227-7 at tea.

Chris Woakes, who like Pope is playing his first match of the series, was batting on four at the break with England 36 runs ahead.

Umesh Yadav (3-70) dismissed England's in-form captain Joe Root late on Thursday to help India claw their way back into the contest after the tourists folded for 191 in the first innings.

The seamer, playing his first match of the series, struck twice after England resumed the second day on 53-3.

Nightwatchman Craig Overton was the first to go, snared at first slip by India captain Virat Kohli.

Dawid Malan, who made 31, followed suit after Rohit Sharma at second slip dived to his right to take a sharp catch.

The Indian seamers, who had been bowling with a lot of discipline, suddenly took their foot off the pedal and boundaries started flowing.

Pope looked in particularly good shape and hit Shardul Thakur for three boundaries in the same over.

His aggression appeared to rub off on Bairstow who meted out similar treatment to Mohammed Siraj in the next over.

Siraj broke the 89-run stand after the lunch break trapping Bairstow lbw for 37.

Moeen made 35 before throwing away his wicket playing a rash stroke against Ravindra Jadeja.

The five-test series is level at 1-1.