Old Trafford
England took a healthy lead before rain ended play on the second day.Getty

England built an encouraging lead over Inida on the second day of the fourth Test before rain halted their progress at Old Trafford.

The hosts reached 237-6 in their first innings in response to India's 152 before the poor weather conditions forced play to be abandoned at 5:40pm (BST).

Ian Bell was dismissed for 58 as India claimed three quick wickets within an hour as England fell to 170-6, but the unbroken partnership of Joe Root (48) and Jos Buttler (22) secured a healthy advantage before the afternoon was brought to a premature end following a string of unsuccessful pitch inspections.

The hosts lost Chris Jordan (13) early on in the morning as he sent Bhuvneshwar Kumar's delivery mid-wicket. The Indian bowler claimed a second wicket early on as Bell soon followed when his out-swinging effort was claimed by Mahendra Dhoni.

As they sat 12 runs off the visitors, England looked to Moeen Ali to provide some stability but a delivery from paceman Varun Aaron saw him bowled out for 13.

As the clouds above Manchester darkened, Buttler made slow progress to steady the England ship before Root entered the fray and struck five fours as he narrowly missed out on a half century.

After play was halted, the skies began to clear as the outfield began to dry out but with pools of water visible to the left of the boundary, play was called off despite the best efforts of the groundsmen.