Joe Root hailed England's "incredible" display with the bat after he and Jonny Bairstow starred in a historic 378-run chase against India, declaring: "Whatever they get, we'll chase it."

Having resumed at 259-3 before a lively Edgbaston crowd on Tuesday, England raced to their most impressive victory yet under the Ben Stokes-Brendon McCullum regime, with Root and Bairstow hitting centuries to complete the highest run chase in the hosts' history and claim a 2-2 draw in the delayed series.

The victory saw England surpass their 359-run chase against Australia in August 2019, as Root made his 28th Test ton in finishing 142 not out.

He and Bairstow registered the highest fourth-wicket partnership in the fourth innings of a men's Test (269), as well as England's fifth-highest fourth-wicket stand in any innings.

Bairstow, meanwhile, also became just the ninth player to hit four Test centuries in England in a calendar year as the home side's entertainers continued their red-ball revival.

England also recorded three successive chases of over 250 runs in their series whitewash of world champions New Zealand last time out, and Root says the team's fearlessness with the bat left them feeling in control throughout day five.

"It was pretty fun doing it. Throughout the whole summer, from that first game, we've said, 'whatever they get, we'll chase it'," Root told Sky Sports. "Ben said to us before the toss: 'We're not going to bat first, we're going to chase.'

"That's the mentality of how we're going about things at the minute. Once we got that partnership going, we just felt in full control.

"So much credit has to go to the two lads at the top [Alex Lees and Zak Crawley], the way they set the platform, the way they shifted the pressure straight back onto India.

"To smash that new ball around on a wicket that was doing a bit was just incredible batting. It really made the work that we had to do afterwards a lot easier. It really was a sublime partnership against a world-class attack.

"The feeling in the dressing room at the moment is 'whatever you get, we're going for it, and we're going to take it down'."

On a personal level, Root added he was enjoying his cricket again after stepping down as captain in April, saying successor Stokes has instilled a newfound ruthlessness in the side.

"When you're enjoying things it makes it a lot easier, you turn up to practice excited, you get out in the middle, and you're up for the contest," Root added.

"I feel in a really good place and I just need to make sure I maintain that. One thing that's worked for me is just accepting it's a game of failure, batting, and you're not going to get it right every time.

"It was good fun, like I said, there was a little bit on offer, but when you're putting pressure on bowlers it's very difficult for them to keep coming hard at you.

"We recognised crucial parts of pressure, I think we soaked it up well at times in the second innings, and then when we got our chances to put it back on them, we did it.

"We were ruthless with it, something that we might have lacked a bit in recent times – especially under my leadership!"

Centuries from Joe Root and Jonny Bairstow carried England to a historic seven-wicket win over India, completing their record-breaking 378-run chase in the first session of day five.

After successful fourth-innings pursuits of 277, 299 and 296 in the whitewash of New Zealand, England required their highest such recovery in Tests to take this rearranged fifth match against India.

But Root (142 not out) and Bairstow (114 no) had done much of the heavy lifting late on Monday at Edgbaston, allowing the home side's imperious duo to charge through Tuesday morning and improve their unbeaten partnership to an outstanding 269.

The successful chase meant England claimed a draw from the delayed 2021 series and won a fourth consecutive Test match since the new Ben Stokes-Brendon McCullum regime took charge of the team.

A night's sleep appeared to have done little to rejuvenate India, who continued the previous evening's themes of rash bowling, poor field placement and regular appeals for a change of ball.

One of those early appeals was successful, but England bludgeoned on regardless, even aided by four leg byes in consecutive Mohammed Shami overs.

A flurry of Root fours brought up his hundred, reaching three figures with a stab at a Mohammed Siraj delivery that skipped over second slip to the boundary.

Root initially maintained control of the strike and the scoring, making Bairstow wait until the 18th over of the day for his century. A single did the job, with Root making his ground in time before a direct hit to celebrate with his team-mate.

And another single, this time from Root, concluded a chase that ultimately became a saunter, cementing England's ability to seemingly match any target with the bat in this thrilling new era.

Bairstow matches Root record – with time for both to break it

'Bazball' has been the making of Bairstow, who now has four centuries in his past five innings – the other an unbeaten 71. That means half of Bairstow's 12 Test hundreds have come in 2022 alone.

That ties the record for the most England Test tons in a calendar year, with Root having matched the six-century achievements of Denis Compton and Michael Vaughan just last year.

With three Tests to come against South Africa next month and more against Pakistan later in the year, Bairstow is well placed to move past six – as is Root, who has five this year.

England need 119 runs to win the rearranged fifth Test and secure a drawn series with India after a superb day four put them in position to pull off a record chase.

Delayed by a year after a COVID-19 outbreak in the India camp forced a Test originally scheduled for Old Trafford to be cancelled, a fascinating conclusion is in store at Edgbaston.

The hosts will have confidence of chasing down 378 after reaching stumps on 259-3 with the two men who hit the winning runs as England clinched a 3-0 win over New Zealand last week - Joe Root (76 not out) and Jonny Bairstow (72no) continuing their outstanding form.

India, who have dominated much of this match, were earlier dismissed for 245, and a seemingly ominous target that would break England's previous record chase of 362 against Australia in 2019.

Stokes (4-33) polished off the India tail with the final three wickets. Prior to that, Matthew Potts (2-50) did much of the hard work in reducing the tourists - who were 125-3 at the start of play - from what had looked like a commanding position at 153-3, with smart hands from Root allowing Jack Leach to remove the dangerous Rishabh Pant (57).

Despite getting little from their lower order, India may have felt comfortable defending such a lofty target. Any such feeling was quickly dispelled as Alex Lees and Zak Crawley belied their struggles opening the batting by reaching 100 inside 20 overs.

Crawley was denied his 50 as he left a Jasprit Bumrah delivery that clipped off stump and when the bowler removed Ollie Pope for a duck and Lees was run out after tea, India looked to be turning the tide.

But as they did consistently against New Zealand, Root and Bairstow wrested the momentum in aggressive fashion, both once again displaying the fluency and timing that has turned England's Test fortunes around and could now rescue this series.

 

Anderson achieves another milestone

Jimmy Anderson was not overly involved in limiting India's second-innings lead in a wicket-taking capacity, but his catch at midwicket to dismiss Shreyas Iyer saw him join a select group as he claimed his 100th catch.

Indeed, he became the sixth player in Tests to register 1000 runs, 100 wickets and 100 catches. Also on that list are Garfield Sobers, Ian Botham, Carl Hooper, Shane Warne and Jacques Kallis.

Lees and Crawley lay platform

Lees' half-century came in just 44 balls, making it the fourth-fastest by an England opener. His stand of 107 with Crawley was England's sixth fourth-innings opening partnership of 100 or more this century. It was also the highest such England partnership at Edgbaston.

After a Bumrah-inspired blip, Root and Bairstow took advantage of that platform, putting on 150 in 197 balls. Bairstow's lone six was England's 58th of 2022, putting them seven shy of their record total of 65 from 2005 with a three-Test series with South Africa and a tour of Pakistan still to come.

India recovered from Jonny Bairstow clinching yet another century to finish an eventful third day of the fourth Test against England with a healthy 257-run lead.

Bairstow led a fine England counter in a thrilling morning session, bringing up his third century in as many Tests as the hosts looked to make up for a poor start to their first innings.

But after Bairstow's team-mates toiled in being bowled out for 284, India recovered from the early loss of Shubman Gill to reach 125-3 by close of play, leaving the hosts with it all to do on day four. 

The hosts enjoyed some good fortune upon resuming, with skipper Ben Stokes (25-36) being dropped in inexplicable fashion by Jasprit Bumrah before gifting the visiting captain a catch with an identical shot off the very next ball.

As has often been the case since Brendon McCullum took charge, England were left to rely on the brilliant Bairstow, who dragged them into contention by bringing up his century – the 11th of his Test career - off 119 balls shortly after lunch.

But their momentum dissipated when Mohammed Shami had him caught for 106 off 140 to reduce England to 241-7, before Mohammed Siraj dismissed Stuart Broad (1-5) in the very next over and finished the innings 4-66 after accounting for Sam Billings (36-57) and Matthew Potts (19-18).

Needing a fast start to have any hope of teeing up another successful chase, England were boosted when James Anderson had Gill (4-3) caught at slip, his fourth Test dismissal of the India opener.

Broad and Stokes then claimed a wicket apiece as Hanuma Vihari (11-44) and the out-of-form Virat Kohli (20-44) were felled, before Cheteshwar Pujara bought up a slow half-century off 139 balls. 

He and Rishabh Pant (30 not out) were then content to see the day out in quiet fashion, with England now requiring wickets to fall quickly on Monday.

Brilliant Bairstow drags England into contention

The pressure was on when England resumed on Sunday, and Bairstow – so often the key man in the early days of McCullum's red-ball revolution, stepped up after a bout of sledging from Kohli.

In recording his first century against India in Test cricket, Bairstow went from 13 off 61 balls to 100 off 119, going up through the gears in rapid fashion when England needed him most.

Siraj halts hosts' progress

With England having recovered from 84-5 to 241-7 by Bairstow's dismissal, India could have been forgiven for thinking back to the way McCullum's men conducted three successful chases of over 250 against New Zealand in their recent series whitewash.

But Siraj stepped up to claim a four-wicket haul as India held off their hosts, leaving England requiring something special to level the series at 2-2.

England might need another act of Jonny Bairstow heroism to dig them out of a deep hole at Edgbaston after India made the home side suffer on a rain-hit second day of the fifth Test.

In a wild morning session, India went from 338-7 to 416 all out, Ravindra Jadeja completing a century by moving from 83 to 104 before being bowled by James Anderson.

India scored a world-record 35 runs from one Stuart Broad over as captain Jasprit Bumrah took centre stage with the bat. Bumrah is better known for his work with the ball, and the skipper then reduced England to 44-3 when he sent back Alex Lees, Zak Crawley and Ollie Pope.

After a two-hour rain break, the third such interruption of the innings, England lost former skipper Joe Root for 31, and nightwatchman Jack Leach followed, with Bairstow (12 not out) and captain Ben Stokes (0 no) together at the close. England were 84-5 at stumps, nowhere near where they hoped to be in the contest.

India are 2-1 ahead in this series, one that began last year but had to be curtailed before the fifth Test got under way due to COVID-19 concerns in the tourists' ranks. This long-delayed match is therefore decisive, with England needing a victory to force a drawn series.

Rather than go after the win, avoiding a heavy defeat could become the priority, but at this stage the hosts will still believe they can salvage this situation, given positivity is flowing through the team after the recent 3-0 rout of New Zealand.

Broad had a rotten morning, entering the record books in unwanted fashion when Bumrah set about his bowling. The previous Test record of 28 runs from an over was obliterated, aided by Broad bowling a high wide that raced to the boundary before being clubbed for six off a no-ball.

Bumrah finished on 31 not out when Broad held a catch off James Anderson (5-60) to remove Mohammed Siraj in the next over.

Three rain delays affected England's reply, but the batting was not up to scratch. The most damaging dismissal was surely that of Root to a snorter of a delivery that climbed rapidly into the batsman, drawing a thin edge to wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant. Now Bairstow, whose past three Test scores have been 136, 162 and 71 not out, will aim to lead a recovery effort alongside the skipper.


Anderson at it again

It still defies belief that England's previous regime looked ready to discard Anderson. He might turn 40 later this month, but few seamers in world cricket can rival his skill, and India again found him so difficult to play. A 32nd five-wicket haul of his Test career was his sixth against India.

England have done it before, so can they do it again?

England hardly need to look far back in the history books for inspiration. In the third Test against New Zealand, they were 55-6 in their first innings but rallied to post 360 all out. The seventh-wicket stand of 241 runs between Bairstow and Jamie Overton saved the day that time, and something special is required again here.

England paceman Stuart Broad was put to the sword by Jasprit Bumrah as India set a Test record for the most runs scored in an over.

The previous record of 28 runs was obliterated as India grabbed 35 from Broad's shocking set of six, with Bumrah doing most of the damage.

The rout began with a top-edged hook to the boundary for four, before Broad's over descended into chaos as a high wide scurried off to the boundary to give India five free runs, and the next ball, a no-ball, was flung away for six.

Bumrah lashed each of the next three deliveries for four as India reached 28 from the first four permissible deliveries, before the India captain clattered Broad away for a second six of the over.

India had 34 with one ball remaining, and this time Broad sent down a yorker, with Bumrah and Mohammed Siraj scrambling a single.

The onslaught took India from 377-9 to 412-9 on the second morning of the match, with the tourists adding just four more in the next over before James Anderson had Siraj caught by the fed-up Broad.

This fifth Test at Edgbaston is a long-delayed series decider, having been postponed from last September, when it was due to be played at Old Trafford, due to COVID-19 concerns in the India camp.

Anderson and England colleague Joe Root were two of the three players who had previously conceded 28 runs from a Test over, to share the unwanted record with South Africa Robin Peterson.

Rishabh Pant's inspired counter-attack ensured India ended day one of the final Test against England at Edgbaston still firmly in the match.

England came into the rearranged final encounter of last year's series on a high following the whitewash of New Zealand and soon reduced India to 98-5, before Pant (146 off 111) and Ravindra Jadeja (83 not out) led the fightback.

Their partnership of 222 – in which Pant did the heavy lifting with a barrage of boundaries and the fastest Test century by an India wicketkeeper – helped carry the tourists to 338-7 by stumps.

Ben Stokes had unsurprisingly put India in to bat, potentially pursuing a fourth successive successful fourth-innings chase.

The England captain first needed his bowlers to deliver, and James Anderson (3-52) did exactly that in the morning session in tempting edges from Shubman Gill (17) and Cheteshwar Pujara (13) – Zak Crawley taking each catch either side of putting down a chance from Hanuma Vihari off the bowling of Matthew Potts.

Rain interrupted play – bringing an early lunch – but not England's momentum, as Potts (2-85) pinned Vihari (20) and then bamboozled Virat Kohli (11), who pulled his bat away too late and saw the ball run off the face into his stumps.

Anderson's third wicket from Shreyas Iyer (15) owed a great deal to a superb Sam Billings catch, yet Pant's big hitting turned the tide – helped by some increasingly untidy work from England.

Pant eventually departed to Joe Root, nicking to Crawley in attempting another blast to pass 150, but the hosts still have work to do with the ball before they will again be asked to score well with the bat in a continuation of this entertaining new era under Stokes.

New foe for Kohli

Many have pondered the possibility this is the last time Anderson and Kohli come face to face in a Test match, given the England great turns 40 later this month. No bowler has claimed more Kohli wickets in Tests than Anderson (seven).

But this time it was the turn of the new man. Potts had stunning figures of 3-3 bowling to Kane Williamson in the New Zealand series and quickly added another huge scalp, with Kohli now averaging an underwhelming 28.63 for this delayed series.

Pant profits

Despite India's 2-1 lead as they bid to win a Test series in England for the first time since 2007, Kohli was not alone in struggling slightly with the bat last year. Pant's series average entering this match was 20.86, with a high score of 50.

But suspicions England's aggressive approach could soon meet their match were affirmed by his ability to find the boundary time and again, avoiding the sort of errors on which Stokes' attack might have preyed. Pant had 23 boundaries in this innings, surpassing his 15 in the previous four matches between the sides combined.

Uncapped Lancashire seamer Richard Gleeson is the new face in Jos Buttler's first white-ball squads as England captain for the upcoming ODI and T20I series against India.

Bowler Gleeson joins his domestic team-mate in his first selection since succeeding the retiring Eoin Morgan as skipper last month.

The 34-year-old has taken 70 wickets in 64 domestic T20 matches and posted career-best figures of 5-33 against Worcestershire Rapids in this season's T20 Blast.

Elsewhere, there are a mix of familiar names for Buttler and coach Matthew Mott, although Yorkshire bowler Adil Rashid is absent after the ECB gave him permission to make The Hajj pilgrimage to Mecca.

Harry Brook is named in both squads, seemingly the beneficiary of Morgan's retirement.

Brook was an unused member of Ben Stokes' first Test squad, with the red-ball team's own new era getting off to a roaring start with a series whitewash against New Zealand.

Star Test batsmen Stokes, Joe Root and Jonny Bairstow were all named to Buttler's ODI group.

But there is no room for David Payne and Luke Wood, who made the ODI trip to the Netherlands last month, while Dawid Malan only makes the 20-over team.

Tom Banton, James Vince, George Garton and Sam Billings miss out from the T20I squad that toured the West Indies in January.

England T20I squad : Jos Buttler (Lancashire), Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), Harry Brook (Yorkshire), Sam Curran (Surrey), Richard Gleeson (Lancashire), Chris Jordan (Surrey), Liam Livingstone (Lancashire), Dawid Malan (Yorkshire), Tymal Mills (Sussex), Matthew Parkinson (Lancashire), Jason Roy (Surrey), Phil Salt (Lancashire), Reece Topley (Surrey), David Willey (Yorkshire).

England ODI squad : Jos Buttler (Lancashire), Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), Jonny Bairstow (Yorkshire), Harry Brook (Yorkshire), Brydon Carse (Durham), Sam Curran (Surrey), Liam Livingstone (Lancashire), Craig Overton (Somerset), Matthew Parkinson (Lancashire), Joe Root (Yorkshire), Jason Roy (Surrey), Phil Salt (Lancashire), Ben Stokes (Durham), Reece Topley (Surrey), David Willey (Yorkshire).

Ben Stokes warned England are capable of taking their aggressive new approach to another level ahead of the rearranged fifth Test against India.

England started a new era under Test captain Stokes and head coach Brendon McCullum by beating New Zealand 3-0.

They went on the attack in three big run chases to whitewash the Black Caps, who defeated India to win the inaugural World Test Championship final last year.

England will get the chance to continue riding the crest of a wave at Edgbaston on Friday, aiming to draw the series 2-2 in a match that was due to be played at Old Trafford last year, only for India to head home early due to fears over an increase in coronavirus cases in their camp.

Asked if England can be even more positive in the longest format, Stokes replied: "If there's a team that can, it's us."

Stokes did not play in the four Tests against India last year, as he was taking a break to protect his mental health while also recovering from a broken finger.

The all-rounder is relishing an opportunity to maintain the momentum now, though.

"It is a bit strange," he said. "It is different opposition, but I made it very clear after the New Zealand series how we're going to do things, and we're going to go out there and try to operate in the same way."

James Anderson replaces Jamie Overton after missing the victory over the Black Caps at Headingley due to an ankle injury, while wicketkeeper-batter Sam Billings plays as Ben Foakes has not fully recovered from COVID-19.

Paceman Jasprit Bumrah will captain the tourists for the first time in the absence of Rohit Sharma, who is sidelined after contracting coronavirus.

India have not won an away Test series against England since 2007, and they have never won at Edgbaston in the longest format, losing six matches and drawing one.

Bairstow in the form of his life

Jonny Bairstow has thrived on having license to play with freedom in a new dawn for England.

Bairstow and former captain Joe Root were outstanding with the bat against New Zealand, scoring 394 and 396 runs respectively in six knocks.

The powerful Bairstow has racked up 774 runs this year at an average of 64.5. Only in 2016 (1,470 runs at 58.8) has he scored more in a single year since his debut in the format in 2012.

Kohli closing in on landmark as he eyes elusive century

Virat Kohli was unable to score a long-awaited century against Sri Lanka in March after stepping down as captain.

You have to go back to November 2019 for his last Test hundred, which came against Bangladesh. 

Kohli only needs another 40 runs to reach the 2,000 mark against England in Tests, a feat that only Sachin Tendulkar (2,535) and Sunil Gavaskar (2,483) have achieved.

Jasprit Bumrah will captain India in their rescheduled fifth Test with England following confirmation that Rohit Sharma will miss out with coronavirus.

Regular skipper Sharma tested positive for COVID-19 last Saturday, with Mayank Agarwal called up to the squad to provide cover.

Having again returned a positive test on Thursday, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) confirmed Sharma will play no part at Edgbaston.

Bumrah will step up for his maiden stint as captain at any level, with Rishabh Pant as his deputy, and becomes the first fast bowler to lead India since Kapil Dev in 1987.

Virat Kohli skippered India in the first four Tests last year, with the final match being pushed back by nine months due to a COVID-19 outbreak in the tourists' camp.

Rohit's absence will leave a huge void to be filled, the 35-year-old's 368 runs across the first four Tests bettered only by the 564 managed by England's Joe Root.

England have a coronavirus absentee of their own for the fifth Test, which India lead 2-1, as Ben Foakes has failed to recover in time for the start of play on Friday.

Sam Billings, who was called up to the squad during the final Test of England's 3-0 whitewash of New Zealand, will therefore keep his place behind the stumps.

James Anderson returns to the England team in place of Jamie Overton, meanwhile, despite the latter impressing against the Black Caps.

Brendon McCullum said England's performance across their series whitewash of New Zealand will have set "alarm bells" ringing throughout Test cricket, as he called for a similar approach against India on Friday.

With McCullum and Ben Stokes in place as the new red-ball coach-captain partnership, England recorded a 3-0 series win, with each triumph including chases of more than 250 runs, a first for a team in a single Test series.

After winning just one of their previous 17 Tests, it represented an incredible turnaround for England, who do not have long to wait until their next outing.

With the rescheduled Test against India due to start on Friday at Edgbaston, McCullum is hoping to see England's positive approach replicated.

"It'll be quite good fun to look at a new opponent," said McCullum, as reported by ESPNcricinfo. "The world Test champions were a formidable opponent to overcome, and the alarm bells have probably gone off somewhat around world cricket as to how this team is going to play. 

"We need to make sure against a different opposition we're well researched, well planned, well prepared, and try and roll out a similar kind of performance."

McCullum called for England to push their daring style to new limits against India, who are 2-1 up in a series originally scheduled to conclude last September.

"I hope we take it too far because then we'll know exactly where that line is. Until you do that, you're not really sure," he added.

"We've seen it with the England white-ball stuff – there have been times where they've probably pushed too hard, and then they know. 

"I think it'll be the same with us, and we've got to keep exploring what that line is.

"It's not just about batting either. If you look at how we've fielded and how we've bowled as well, some of the field placements that the skipper's had in place and the mentality the guys have had, is constantly to try and chase wickets."

'Bazball' – the term given to England's entertaining style under McCullum – has won universal praise, but the head coach says he was fortunate to take on his new role when a clear desire for change existed.

"Timing is important – you have got to be ready for change," McCullum said. "I think taking over this job when the skipper and I have, there was a thirst for change. 

"When your results haven't been good, people are more receptive to change.

"The freshness of some of the ideas, the approach, stripping out some of the noise, but [also] getting guys to play the game for the game's sake. 

"The skipper has taken them on a journey, I've tried to fill in the gaps where needed, and they've got instant gratification for that change. It doesn't always happen. But that's why those guys are so keen on this style."

Sam Billings has been added to England's squad for the rescheduled Test against India at Edgbaston, while Zak Crawley has retained his place despite struggling for form.

Kent captain Billings was drafted in as a COVID substitute for Ben Foakes on the fourth day of England's third Test against New Zealand, which concluded on Monday.

Billings' main contribution in the seven-wicket triumph was a bizarre caught-behind off Neil Wagner that he wedged between his knees.

He is now in line for a third Test appearance, though Foakes may yet feature as he is due out of isolation on Thursday, a day out from the India Test beginning in Birmingham.

The addition of Billings is the only change made by England, who have kept faith in Crawley at the top of the order, despite some unconvincing showings against New Zealand.

Crawley finished the three-match series with 87 runs and was at fault for the comical run-out of opening partner Alex Lees in his side's second innings of the final Test.

India lead England 2-1 ahead of the final Test, which originally scheduled to be played last September but was cancelled due to COVID-19 concerns.

The tourists announced on Monday that Mayank Agarwal has been called up after captain Rohit Sharma tested positive for coronavirus.

India crushed Ireland by seven wickets after rain clouds cleared at Malahide, delivering a clinical display in the opening T20I.

Late-afternoon wet weather in Dublin meant this was reduced to a 12-overs-a-side contest, and Ireland recovered from a rocky start to post 108-4 from their allocation.

Harry Tector cracked three sixes in making 64 not out from 33 balls, the highest T20I score by an Ireland batter against India, but the 22-year-old was the only member of the home team who made a substantial impact. They had been 22-3 at one point.

The hosts' total looked on the low side given the batting power in India's ranks, and that was how it turned out as India sauntered to 111-3 in 9.2 overs.

India lost Ishan Kishan for 26 and Suryakumar Yadav without scoring to successive deliveries from Craig Young in the third over, bowling the former and pinning the latter lbw.

They had 30 on the board at that point but were not slowed down by the twin blows, with opener Deepak Hooda's 47 not out from 29 balls the pivotal innings.

Captain Hardik Pandya bludgeoned 24 from 12 deliveries, striking three sixes, before being snagged lbw by Josh Little, by which time the victory line was in sight.


Too little, too late

By the time Little pinned Pandya for a prized scalp, this contest was effectively already over. Hooda had provided the glue that held India's innings together, so it was appropriate he was the man to strike the winning runs at the start of Little's next over, cracking the first two balls to the boundary to clinch the victory. Little's 2.2 overs cost 39 runs, while Young finished with 2-18 from two overs.

Harry in a hurry

These sides meet again on Tuesday, also at Malahide, and Ireland will be looking for more fireworks from Tector. His innings on Sunday followed a handy run of three prosperous T20I innings in February, when he clattered 24 from 15 deliveries against Germany, 35 from 27 balls against Oman and 50 from 37 against the United Arab Emirates.

Rohit Sharma has tested positive for COVID-19, less than a week before India's rescheduled Test match against England.

The India captain had been taking part in his team's warm-up game against Leicestershire, scoring 25 in the first innings but not batting in the second.

However, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) confirmed on Saturday that Rohit had tested positive for COVID-19 and is in isolation.

"Team India captain Mr Rohit Sharma has tested positive for COVID-19 following a Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) conducted on Saturday," a statement read. 

"He is currently in isolation at the team hotel and is under the care of the BCCI Medical Team."

Rohit has averaged 30.00 from three Test innings in 2022, having averaged 47.68 from 21 innings last year.

The Test match with England, which gets underway at Edgbaston on Friday, is the rescheduled fifth Test from September 2021.

India skittled South Africa over for only 87 to seal a huge 82-run win in Rajkot, levelling up their T20I series at 2-2 and teeing up a mouth-watering decider on Sunday.

Avesh Khan claimed outstanding figures of 4-18 as India eased to a victory even more comprehensive than Tuesday's 48-run win in Visakhapatnam.

India earlier lost Ruturaj Gaikwad (5), Shreyas Iyer (4) and Ishan Kishan (27) during the opening seven overs, but that was nothing compared to the tourists' spectacular collapse, as Rassie van der Dussen top scored for the Proteas with just 20 runs.

The hosts had been reduced to 40-3 after being put in by Temba Bavuma, but a stand of 65 between Hardik Pandya (46) and Dinesh Karthik (55) following Rishabh Pant's departure for 17 got them motoring.

Karthik's superb half-century helped carry India to a respectable 169-6, and he was only dismissed by Dwaine Pretorius midway through the final over before South Africa put in a dreadful performance with the bat.

Quinton de Kock (14) was the first to go, followed within three balls by Pretorius for a duck after captain Bavuma retired with an elbow injury.

Things only got more painful from there as Avesh ran riot, adding the scalps of Van der Dussen (20), Marco Jansen (12) and Keshav Maharaj (0) to that of Pretorius, while Yuzvendra Chahal (2-21) also made his mark as India kept their hopes of a stunning series turnaround alive.

Avesh wreaks havoc

Avesh capitalised on another fragile display with the bat and the momentum is firmly with Indiai.

If Tuesday's attempt at a chase had been poor – Heinrich Klaasen's 29 representing their best showing, Friday's was truly woeful, with only De Kock, Van der Dussen and Jansen reaching double figures during a chastening chase.

Pandya and Karthik step up

India had been wobbling early on, but Pandya and Karthik stepped up following top-order failures.

In particular, Karthik's 55 off 27 balls carried the hosts into the final over, and helped to leave the series delicately poised.

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