LONDON (AP) — England won convincingly and Ireland finished with heads held high in a one-off test that gave both teams what they wanted at Lord’s on Saturday.
The host won the four-day test with a day to spare, and warmed up for the Ashes series starting in two weeks.
The greenhorn Irish, playing only their seventh ever test, made day three last longer than expected by rubbing out a 352-run deficit and avoiding an innings defeat.
England won by 10 wickets when, needing 11 runs to win, Zac Crawley hit three boundaries off the first four balls of their second innings.
England seamer Josh Tongue claimed 5-66 on debut while an Ireland record 163-run partnership between tailenders Mark Adair and Andy McBrine forced England to bat again after tea.
After James McCollum retired hurt late Friday and unable to return, Ireland was effectively 162-7 on Saturday morning.
Adair and McBrine upped the ante after lunch, launching astonishing attacks on Stuart Broad and Jack Leach before Matthew Potts bounced out No. 9 Adair for a 76-ball 88 that included 12 fours and two sixes.
Adair and McBrine pushed Ireland to 325-7, effectively 8.
McBrine got support from Fionn Hand, who gave Tongue his fifth test wicket, and last man Graham Hume to reach tea in the lead. McBrine was stranded on 86 not out when Hume was bowled by Broad to leave the tourists on 362-9 in their second innings.
Crawley wrapped up the 11th win in 13 tests in the “Bazball” era under captain Ben Stokes and coach Brendon McCullum.
Huge scores in quick time from Ben Duckett (182) and Ollie Pope (205) in England’s first-innings of 524-4 declared raised the possibility a result inside two days but Ireland held out.
The Ashes with Australia starts on June 16. Tongue was kept in an unchanged 16-man squad for the first two Ashes tests at Edgbaston and Lord’s.
Meanwhile, Ben Stokes became the first captain to win a Test match without batting, bowling or wicketkeeping. He will now prepare for the Ashes 2023 against Australia.