In the Lord’s Test match against England, Andy McBrine let go of a chance to score a likely Test hundred to protect his injured Ireland teammate James McCollum.

Stuart Broad (5-51) left Ireland in tatters at 19-3 on the first morning after Ben Stokes opted to bowl. Opener James McCollum outlasted his teammates in the top order before being fifth out for 36, the highest score in Ireland’s 172.

England then hammered away at 6.33 an over before declaring on 524-4 – with a lead of 352 – riding on Ben Duckett’s 178-ball 182 and Ollie Pope’s 208-ball 205.

Despite this being a four-day Test match, the situation seemed hopeless for Ireland. They became 25-2 in eight overs. The fifth ball of the ninth over, bowled by debutant Josh Tongue, was short of a length, and McCollum sized himself up for a pull.

Unfortunately, he twisted his ankle, and had to be escorted off the ground by the Ireland physiotherapist. Tongue (5-66) then reduced Ireland to 162-6 when Mark Adair joined Andy McBrine.

Adair soon overtook McBrine, taking on the English bowlers en route to a 76-ball 88, his highest Test score, a knock that included 12 fours and two sixes. The pair added 163, Ireland’s highest partnership for any wicket in Test cricket.

McBrine, 71 at that point, added another 15 with debutant Fionn Hand before Tongue dismissed the latter. England soon claimed the second new ball, but No.11 Graham Hume hit Joe Root for consecutive boundaries to help Ireland avert innings defeat.

After tea, Hume edged Broad for four but was clean bowled next ball. Ireland were nine down with McBrine on 86, his highest score in first-class cricket, but the only one left to bat was the injured McCollum.

Ireland captain Andy Balbirnie later admitted that McCollum had been keen to walk out to allow McBrine get to a maiden hundred. McCollum had padded up, and was ready in crutches, and would almost certainly have showed up had McBrine been “one hit away”.

Back in 1984, Malcolm Marshall had walked out to bat at Headingley with a broken hand to help Larry Gomes – on 96 – get to a hundred. Marshall famously hit a one-handed boundary before getting out, but not before Gomes had helped himself to 104.

But McBrine himself did not want McCollum’s injury to be aggravated further, and walked off the field.

England needed 11 to win, which Zak Crawley achieved with three boundary hits in four balls from Adair.