Glen Chapple, of Lancashire, and Richard Stemp, of Yorkshire, made sure the Indian late-order revival, led by Utpal Chatterjee's brave unbeaten 72, did not undermine Cork's good work.
Tomorrow morning England A begin their own first innings knowing that a good lead will almost certainly mean a series-clinching victory on a pitch likely to take more spin and produce more uneven bounce as it wears.
Chapple's 3 for 37 from 20 unwavering overs of controlled swing and the under-used Stemp's 2 for 33 were vital factors in England's continued domination of a series they lead 1-0 after their four-wicket win in Bangalore.
But it was Cork who lit the touchpaper for another excellent and committed performance. Cork spent the first half of this winter on official stand-by for Australia and came to India slightly miffed that he had not been called up to the senior squad when Craig White was sent home injured soon after Christmas.
Cork said: "Of course I would love to be in Australia but that has not happened and I am just determined to do well on this tour. I wanted to make sure today that I didn't waste the new ball. I felt that I had not used it well enough at Bangalore. Out here the opening bowlers must put it in the danger area in that first hour."
(India A won toss)
INDIA A - First Innings V S Rathore c Nixon b Cork 4
J Singh lbw b Chapple 4
A A Muzumdar b Cork 7
R Dravid run out 25
*P K Amre c Nixon b Cork 5
S C Ganguly c Salisbury b Chapple 24
V S Yadav st Nixon b Stemp 0
S V Bahutule b Patel 21
U Chatterjee not out 72
R K Chauhan lbw b Chapple 19
P L K Mhambrey lbw b Stemp 12
Extras (lb19 nb4) 23
Total (87.3 overs) 216
Fall: 1-4 2-8 3-26 4-47 5-68 6-68 7-95
Bowling: Cork 25-5-48-3; Chapple 20-9-37-3; Gallian 4-0-17-0; Stemp 12.3-4-33-2; Patel 13-5-24-1; Salisbury 10-0-31-0; Vaughan 3-1-7-0.
Umpires: A V Jayaprakash and S K Bansal.
ENGLAND A: N V Knight, M P Vaughan, J E R Gallian, *A P Wells, D L Hemp, D G Cork, P A Nixon, G Chapple, I D K Salisbury, M M Patel, R D Stemp.Reuse content