Sharma, Dhawan help India beat Ireland in Dublin T20

DUBLIN (AP) Rohit Sharma’s swashbuckling 61-ball 97 and 74 from Shikhar Dhawan set up India’s 76-run victory against Ireland on Wednesday in the first game of a two-match Twenty20 series.

The two batsmen compiled an opening partnership of 160 as the touring team chalked up 208-5 after being put into bat on a sunny summer’s day.

Sharma struck eight 4s and five 6s before he was bowled by paceman Peter Chase when three runs short of what would have been a record-equalling third T20 international hundred.

Dhawan hit five 4s and five 6s in his 45-ball stay at the crease. Chase was the most successful Ireland bowler, taking 4-35.

Ireland stumbled its way to 132-9 in reply, despite a 35-ball 60 from opening batsman James Shannon. Kuldeep Yadav claimed 4-21 while Yuzvendra Chahal took 3-38.

The second game is also in Dublin on Friday.