Lorenzo Insigne says his move to Major League Soccer side Toronto FC came about due to his need for a new challenge after spending his entire career with Napoli.

The Italy international agreed to join Toronto in January, going on to finish the 2021-22 Serie A season with 11 goals in 32 appearances for Luciano Spalletti's Napoli before heading to Canada.

Insigne scored 122 goals in 434 appearances for his hometown club, a tally which is only bettered by Dries Mertens (148) and represents seven goals more than the late, great Diego Maradona netted for the Partenopei (115).

Speaking at his first news conference in Toronto, Insigne refuted the suggestion that MLS represented a step down for a player of his quality.

Asked whether he had been presented with other options, Insigne said: "I didn't receive any [other] offers at that time. It was very early when I first met the president, and I still had my contract with Napoli. I could have stayed in Europe. 

"I'm 31, so I still have many years in front of me, but I wanted to choose happiness and the wellbeing of my family. 

"As I mentioned before, I won a lot with Napoli, and I lost as well. But I wanted a change and more importantly, a challenge, either in another European club or here in North America. 

"I've heard people saying that soccer in North America is not real soccer, but I've seen it and it's not true. 

"It is a challenge because of the move, but I'm really grateful to the opportunity the president gave me and the whole organisation has given me, and the love and the effort that everybody is putting into this. I'm very thankful, and I want to repay the love with my performances during the season."

Insigne joins a team that sits 11th in the Eastern Conference, but he is already targeting silverware.

"I am very happy to be here. This is a big and new adventure for me and my family, this is the first time we have been away from Napoli," he said.

"But it was a great choice, because when I first met the president, he talked to me about Toronto as a city and especially about the team. 

"He struck me as a really great person, and the project that he explained to me about the team stuck with me.

"I made the decision, not for the money, but for a new life for my family and my kids, and for their wellbeing. The project is certainly a challenge, and I would like to be part of winning the championship.

"I played for Napoli for 10 years and for the Italian national team, winning the Euros. So, I don't have any problem with being under pressure, and I'd rather have my actions speak for me on the pitch."

Iga Swiatek is through to the second round at Wimbledon thanks to a straight-sets defeat of Jana Fett on Tuesday.

While the top seed did not have it all her own way in the second set, she ultimately had more than enough to see off Fett 6-0 6-3.

All early signs pointed to a comfortable win for Swiatek as world number 252 Fett looked nervous, committing 14 unforced errors to her opponent's four in the first set.

As such, Swiatek's first-set bagel arrived with the Pole barely breaking a sweat, but her level dropped in the second and allowed Fett a foothold.

Fett broke to love in the first game of the second set, and although Swiatek instantly hit back, the Croatian then broke again before managing to consolidate and go 3-1 up.

But she passed up five break points as Swiatek began to build her way back, and the world number one was soon a break to the good, with Fett's 23 unforced errors, which included nine double faults, proving her downfall.

A sloppy return from Fett gave Swiatek match point, and the former put her next shot straight into the net as the favourite became the first female player since Martina Hingis in 1997 to win 36 successive matches.

Data slam: Swiatek bagels again

Remarkably, Swiatek's first-set bagel was her 17th of the season. This century, only Serena Williams (25 in 2013) and Kim Clijsters (18 in 2003) have managed more in a single year.

While Fett made life a little trickier in the second, the nature of Swiatek's first-set performance almost made victory a formality and few would bet against her repeating her bagel feat in the second round.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Swiatek – 10/15
Fett – 7/23

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Swiatek – 0/3
Fett – 1/9

BREAK POINTS WON
Swiatek – 6/10
Fett – 2/8

England white-ball captain Eoin Morgan has announced his retirement from international cricket and Jos Buttler is expected to replace him as skipper.

Morgan has become one of England's greatest leaders after being appointed in 2014, leading the side to a first World Cup triumph in the 50-over format with a dramatic victory over New Zealand in the 2019 final at Lord's.

The 35-year-old also took England to the T20 World Cup final in 2016 and the semi-finals five years later.

However, Morgan has struggled with the bat in recent months, twice falling without scoring in a 3-0 ODI series whitewash of the Netherlands last week before missing the final match of the series due to injury.

The left-handed batter has passed 50 just once in his past eight ODIs since scoring 106 against his country of birth Ireland in February 2020.

Morgan repeatedly suggested he would step down from his role if he felt he was not contributing with the bat and he confirmed on Tuesday that his international career is over.

"After careful deliberation and consideration, I am here to announce my retirement from international cricket with immediate effect," Morgan said in a statement issued on the England and Wales Cricket Board's website.

"To call time on what has been without doubt the most enjoyable and rewarding chapter of my career hasn't been an easy decision, but I believe now is the right time to do so, both for me, personally, and for both England white-ball sides I have led to this point.

"I am hugely proud of what I have achieved as a player and captain, but the things I will cherish and remember the most are the memories I made with some of the greatest people I know along the way.

"I have been lucky enough to play in two World Cup winning teams, but I believe the future for England's white-ball teams is brighter than ever. We have more experience, more strength and more depth than ever before. I look forward to watching on with a huge level of excitement."

Rob Key, managing director of England men's cricket, added: "On behalf of the ECB and everyone involved in cricket, I'd like to thank Eoin Morgan for his outstanding contribution to the game.

"It will be wrong to think Eoin's legacy was just winning the World Cup in 2019; it is far greater than that.

"As with all great players and leaders, he has changed the way the game has been played, and he has changed the way an entire generation and generations to come will play this form of the game. His legacy within the game will be felt for many years to come.

"He is, without question, the best leader I have seen. I wish him well in the next chapter of his career."

Buttler stepped up in the absence of Morgan for the final ODI against Netherlands and is now expected to take the job on a permanent basis.

Wicketkeeper-batter faces a busy start to his reign, with Matthew Mott's side facing South Africa and India three-match T20I and ODI series during the next month.

England head to Australia for three T20Is in October before the T20 World Cup starts later in the month Down Under.

Eoin Morgan signalled the end of an era for England's limited-overs team as he announced his international retirement on Tuesday.

Morgan, who started his career playing for Ireland, had captained the white-ball side for eight years.

In that time, England went to the 2016 World Twenty20 final and then overcame the pain of that narrow defeat by winning a dramatic 2019 Cricket World Cup final.

Morgan will "go down as one of the most influential figures not just in English cricket but in world cricket", according to Brendon McCullum, while Nasser Hussain lauded "our greatest ever white-ball captain" and Michael Atherton hailed his "white-ball dynasty".

But more than merely an outstanding leader - who is expected to be replaced in his role by Jos Buttler – Morgan has also been a brilliant player for England.

Indeed, there is scarcely a white-ball record Morgan does not have his fingerprints on, with his Test career lasting only 16 matches.

Despite playing 23 ODIs for Ireland between 2006 and 2009 before switching allegiances, no player has appeared in more matches for England in the format (225); the same is true of T20Is (115).

Perhaps it is no surprise then that Morgan leads England in runs in both formats – 6,957 in 50 overs and 2,458 in 20. In fact, only eight players of any nationality have scored more T20I runs.

Morgan has played with some of the sport's biggest hitters but can hold his own, too: his 220 ODI sixes (202 for England) include 17 in one match against Afghanistan at the 2019 World Cup, a record that stands to this day.

In the shortest format, he has hit 120 sixes – the most of any England star and the fourth-most overall.

A star in the field, too, Morgan has taken 46 catches in T20Is to lead England all internationals and rank joint-eighth across the board.

But Morgan will perhaps still be best remembered as the man organising the field as England scaled new heights – and he owns his fair share of records in that regard, too.

Morgan was captain for just over half of his ODI appearances (126), comfortably the most such outings of any England player, ahead of Alastair Cook (69).

It is unsurprisingly a similar story in the younger T20I format, with Morgan's 72 games as captain matching India's MS Dhoni for the record.

Morgan's sublime career is unlikely to be forgotten in a hurry, but this array of dominant records ensures that will remain the case.

Twin brothers Daniel and Henrik Sedin, along with former Vancouver Canucks team-mate Roberto Luongo and long-time Ottawa Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson, headline the Hockey Hall of Fame Class of 2022. 

Finish women's hockey great Riikka Sallinen and Herb Carnegie, a black hockey pioneer, were also selected Monday to be inducted in November. 

Daniel and Henrik played all 17 of their NHL seasons together for the Canucks after being selected second and third overall in the 1999 NHL draft. 

Henrick finished his career with 1,070 points and won the 2009-10 league scoring title and the Hart Trophy as league MVP that season, while Daniel ended with 1,041 points and won the NHL scoring title in 2010-11 with 104 points. 

Henrik routinely set up his brother, finishing his career with 830 assists (27th all time) while Daniel was the beneficiary of Henrik's passes, tallying 393 goals. 

The brothers each won an Olympic gold medal for Sweden at the 2006 Games and helped lead the Canucks to 11 playoffs trips and a berth in the 2011 Stanley Cup Final. 

While the Sedins fuelled the offense for those Canucks teams, Luongo protected the net, serving as Vancouver's goaltender from 2006-07 until he was traded to the Florida Panthers on in March 2014.

Over a 19-season career from 1999-2000 to 2018-19, Luongo ranks second among all goalies with 1,044 games played while his 489 wins are fourth most. 

A three-time finalist for the Vezina Trophy, Luongo ranks ninth all time with 77 career shutouts and was also the goalie on the Canada team that won the 2010 Olympic gold medal. 

Alfredsson, who also won an Olympic gold as a team-mate of the Sedins on the 2006 Sweden team, spent 17 of his 18 NHL seasons with the Senators. 

The winner of the 1995-96 Calder Trophy as the league's top rookie, Alfredsson finished his career with 444 goals (tied for 64th all time) and 1,157 points (55th most in NHL history). 

Sallinen, the first woman not born in North America to be inducted into the Hall of Fame, won bronze medals for Finland at the 1998 and 2018 Olympics, while Carnegie, who died in 2012 at the age of 92, is widely considered the best black hockey player to never play in the NHL. 

The Seattle Mariners acquired veteran slugger Carlos Santana from the Kansas City Royals for a pair of pitchers on Monday, helping to fill the void at first base in the wake of Ty France's injury.

The 36-year-old Santana is in the midst of a third straight sub-par season, batting .216 with four home runs and 21 RBIs in 52 games, but has shown significant improvements at the plate in the past three weeks.

After slashing .157/.291./.244 with seven extra-base hits in his first 37 games, Santana has compiled a .367/.492./.592 slash line with two home runs, five doubles and 11 RBIs in 15 contests since June 7.

An All-Star in 2019 with the Cleveland franchise, Santana's 263 career home runs are the seventh-most by a first baseman since his 2010 rookie season.

Santana will take over at first for France, who suffered a Grade 2 flexor strain in his left forearm on Thursday and is sidelined indefinitely. 

France was enjoying a stellar season before his injury, batting .316 with 10 home runs while leading Seattle with 45 RBIs.

The Mariners, who own baseball's longest active playoff drought at 20 seasons, begin play on Monday in fourth place in the AL East, seven games out of the league's second wild card spot.

As part of the trade, Seattle sent right-hander Wyatt Mills and minor league righty William Fleming to Kansas City, with the Mariners also receiving cash considerations.

Santana, who was first traded to the Mariners in 2018 but returned for a second stint in Cleveland 10 days later, is in the final year of a two-year, $17.5million contract.

Hubert Hurkacz sent down 21 aces in his first-round match at Wimbledon, enough to raise €2,100 for the people of Ukraine but not enough to reach the second round.

The seventh seed, who was a semi-finalist at the All England Club last year, promised on the eve of the championships to donate €100 in aid for every one of his aces.

"Hope my serve works well," Hurkacz wrote on Twitter, and it certainly did across five sets against Alejandro Davidovich Fokina.

Having averaged 11.6 aces per match this season – his 452 the third most on the ATP Tour – Hurkacz had 21 to just three double faults in an effective serving display on Monday.

Unfortunately, Davidovich Fokina was still able to pull off an early upset, narrowly advancing 7-6 (7-4) 6-4 5-7 2-6 7-6 (10-8).

This was the third top-10 win of Davidovich Fokina's career but the first on grass, with his previous two such victories both coming at the Monte-Carlo Masters (vs Matteo Berrettini in 2021 and versus Novak Djokovic in 2022).

While Hurkacz will not add to his ace tally, John Isner undoubtedly will.

He had a remarkable 54 in his five-set win against Enzo Couacaud – as many as Hurkacz managed across six matches in his 2021 run to the last four.

The last player to record 50 or more aces in a grand slam match had also been Isner, against Steven Johnson at the 2020 US Open.

Novak Djokovic became the first male player in the Open Era to win at least 80 matches in all four grand slams with victory over Kwon Soon-woo in the first round of Wimbledon.

The world number three, who is seeking a seventh crown at SW19 to take him level with Pete Sampras and behind only Roger Federer (8), advanced 6-3 3-6 6-3 6-4 on Monday.

That was Djokovic's 80th win at the All England Club in what was his 90th match, adding to his 85 wins at the French Open, 82 at the Australian Open and 81 at the US Open.

He has won 22 matches in a row at Wimbledon since retiring in his quarter-final with Tomas Berdych in the 2017 quarter-finals, and is 17-0 in first-round matches in the event.

With 328 grand slam wins to his name, Djokovic is second only to Federer (369) in that regard, with fellow heavyweight Rafael Nadal – in action on Tuesday – boasting 305 wins.

"I am as dedicated as anyone out there," Djokovic, playing his first match on grass this year, said in his interview on Centre Court. "Now that we're at 80, let's get to 100.

"I'm not one of the youngsters any more, but the love for this sport still burns in me and I try to play my best tennis at the grand slams and deliver my best at the best courts. 

"I've said this before but this court is truly special. For me it has always been the court I dreamed of playing and winning and all my childhood dreams came true here.

"It's an honour and pleasure to be back on Centre Court. This sport has given me everything. I owe a lot to the sport and I love it still with all my heart."

 

New Zealand captain Kane Williamson insists he still has the "appetite" to lead the Black Caps amid questions over his tenure following a 3-0 Test series whitewash against England.

Former Black Caps bowler Simon Doull, who played 32 Tests for his country before moving into commentary, suggested he would like to see Williamson relinquish the captaincy to focus on his batting.

That was prior to the third Test at Headingley, where England eased to their 296 target and became the first team to chase down 250 or more three times in a single series.

Williamson scored 31 in the first innings in Leeds and 48 in the second, but has passed 50 just once in his last 10 Test innings since crafting 238 against Pakistan in January 2021 at Christchurch.

Tom Latham, who stepped up when Williamson was absent at Trent Bridge, has been mooted as the next New Zealand skipper, but the Black Caps captain insists he is committed to the task at hand.

"We opted for the balance of the side to go with three seamers," Williamson said.

"We were curious to whether it would turn, but it's just one of those things. We made the decision not to play the spinner, but it wasn't the easiest to bat on at any time.

"It would have been nice for the top four to contribute a bit more, and that's an area we want to be contributing more from.

"I certainly love playing for this group and being their leader. It has been an interesting time and challenging, but the appetite is still there from me."

Michael Bracewell was selected ahead of Ajaz Patel and went for 163 in just 22.3 overs across the two innings, picking up two wickets.

While Williamson defended the decision on his spinners, he pointed to the aggressive approach of a new-look England side under Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum as the difference in the series.

"It's been an incredible series. In all three matches we had our opportunities and we were ahead of the game at times in each one but credit to England, they chose to counter-attack when they were under pressure and they did it well, especially in this match," he added.

"It is frustrating to lose the series but there were a lot of positives. There is clearly a new theme to England's approach and they did it extremely well.

"It was a highly competitive series, but they won those fine margins and those moments that changed the outcome of the matches."

Mayank Agarwal has been called up by India after captain Rohit Sharma tested positive for COVID-19 ahead of the rescheduled Test against England.

Rohit played in the first innings of the warm-up game against Leicestershire, scoring 25 before not batting in the second.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) subsequently confirmed the 35-year-old had contracted coronavirus on Saturday, just six days before the rearranged Test against England at Edgbaston starts.

Agarwal was initially left out of the squad, but an injury to KL Rahul and Rohit's isolation has opened the door for him to return to the Test side for the first time since March.

The 31-year-old managed just 59 runs in his last two Tests against Sri Lanka at home and endured a difficult Indian Premier League campaign, registering just 196 runs at an average of 16.3.

Agarwal looked likely to open when India travelled to England last year but suffered concussion before the opener, with Rohit stepping in and leading the tourists' scoring charts with 368 runs in eight innings.

That is the second-most runs scored by any batter in the series, which the tourists lead 2-1 with one match to play, but India will now face a resurgent England side under new leadership.

Brendon McCullum and Ben Stokes have combined as the new coach and captain partnership, with England downing world Test champions New Zealand 3-0.

England completed the series whitewash over the Kiwis on Monday, easing to their 296 target at Headingley to become the first Test team to chase down 250 three times in a single series.

India squad:  Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Virat Kohli, Shreyas Iyer, Hanuma Vihari, Cheteshwar Pujara, Rishabh Pant (wk), KS Bharat (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Shardul Thakur, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Siraj, Umesh Yadav, Prasidh Krishna, Mayank Agarwal.

 

Novak Djokovic was made to work by Kwon Soon-woo for his place in the second round of Wimbledon as the reigning champion advanced with victory in four sets on Monday.

In the first match of this year's tournament on Centre Court, which had its roof closed due to rain, Djokovic was pegged back at 1-1 but ultimately prevailed 6-3 3-6 6-3 6-4.

The six-time champion has now won each of his past 22 matches at the All England Club and will face either Thanasi Kokkinakis or Kamil Majchrzak in the next round.

Djokovic had yet to play on grass in 2022 prior to his opening clash with Kwon and he was far from his fluent best in the first two sets in particular.

Kwon earned the first break of the match in the third game with a glorious forehand, though Djokovic hit back with two breaks of his own to edge the opening set.

The world number 81 earned the only break of serve in the fourth game of the second set, with Djokovic squandering three break points of his own in the following game.

However, the Serbian showed good signs of recovery – and some impressive shots around the court – by holding throughout the third set and breaking Kwon in the eighth game.

Kwon failed to take advantage of two break points in the second game of the final set and it was plain sailing from that point on for Djokovic.

He completed the job in just under two-and-a-half hours and is the first male player in the Open Era with 80 or more main draw wins in all four grand slam tournaments.

Data slam: Djokovic winning streak continues

Djokovic may have slipped down to third in the ATP rankings after a disrupted campaign, and he was not at his best against Kwon, but he remains the man to beat at Wimbledon.

He is without defeat at SW19 since retiring in his quarter-final with Tomas Berdych in the 2017 quarter-finals, with Monday's victory his 80th in 90 matches in the tournament.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Djokovic – 30/29
Kwon – 31/26

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Djokovic – 15/2
Kwon – 7/5

BREAK POINTS WON
Djokovic – 4/8
Kwon – 2/6

LaLiga president Javier Tebas says he hopes Barcelona are able to complete the signing of wantaway Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski.

With just one year remaining on his contract with the Bundesliga champions, Lewandowski has repeatedly expressed his desire to join Barca, saying "something has died" within him and insisting his time in Munich is "over".

While Bayern remain steadfast in their desire to keep the striker, who scored 50 goals and added six assists in all competitions last season, Barcelona have made no secret of their interest in the 33-year-old.

Their attempts to sign him, however, appear to be subject to raising funds from player sales and salary cuts, with Tebas saying last month the Blaugrana must part with prized assets to complete the deal, declaring "they know what they have to do: sell assets".

Barca president Joan Laporta reacted angrily to that suggestion, accusing Tebas of wishing to harm the club's interests, but LaLiga's chief now appears more open to the prospect of the Poland international moving to Camp Nou.

Speaking at an event in Madrid, Tebas said: "I hope Lewandowski plays for Barcelona and has a good campaign.

 

"I hope that the [economic] levers Laporta has activated will allow the player to make it to Barcelona, because he is a legend of Bayern Munich and European football.

"If they execute what they approved in the assemblies, he will be able to play for Barcelona.

"There is interest and if they execute those levers then they will be able to sign him."

Among players in the top five European leagues, only Kylian Mbappe (60) and Karim Benzema (59) recorded more direct goal involvements than Lewandowski (56) last term, while no player to score at least 15 goals averaged fewer minutes per strike than the the Pole's 80.1 minutes.

Angel Di Maria and Juventus are agreeing the "final details" of his contract as the Argentina international nears a move to Turin, according to the forward's agent.

Di Maria joined Paris Saint-Germain from Manchester United in 2015 but will leave the French capital when his terms expire later this week.

Barcelona were said to be interested in, but reports suggest the 34-year-old will sign a one-year deal with Juve with the option of an additional one-season extension.

New Rosario Central head coach Carlos Tevez also expressed his interest in bringing Di Maria back to his former club, with the attacker said to want to return to Argentina after the World Cup in Qatar.

That is said to have delayed the negotiations between Di Maria and Juve, but his agent Lisandro Pirosanto insists a move will soon be confirmed.

"We are talking about the final details and we are waiting for Juventus to give us the okay on some things," Pirosanto said, as quoted by La Stampa.

Massimiliano Allegri will acquire an experienced campaigner should Di Maria arrive as expected as Juve look to compete with Milan, Inter and Napoli at the Serie A summit.

Di Maria appeared 295 times for PSG, scoring 92 goals and assisting 112 times in all competitions.

He played 31 games in his final season in Paris and managed 13 goal involvements (five goals, eight assists), a tally bettered only by Neymar (21), Lionel Messi (25) and Kylian Mbappe (60) among PSG players.

Andreas Christensen admits he struggled when making the 'tough' decision to leave Chelsea, with the Denmark international expected to join Barcelona on a free transfer.

Chelsea confirmed earlier this month that Christensen was to leave Stamford Bridge at the end of his contract, having contributed to 14 clean sheets in 34 appearances for Thomas Tuchel's men in the 2021-22 season.

The writing had looked to be on the wall for Christensen when Tuchel revealed the defender opted out of featuring in last month's FA Cup final defeat to Liverpool for "private" reasons, with Barca strongly linked with a move for the 26-year-old. 

Christensen joined the London club as a youth player when leaving Brondby in 2012, going on to win the Champions League, Europa League, UEFA Super Cup and FIFA Club World Cup with the Blues.

He has now opened up on the difficulties he faced in deciding to seek pastures new, writing on Instagram: "I had a tough decision to make at the age of 16 to leave Denmark. There was only ever one choice for me and that was Chelsea. From the moment I arrived they made me feel at home.

"Some of my proudest moments at the club were when we won FA Youth Cup and UEFA Youth League. Those were a special group of young players that I was proud to have as team-mates.

"Last year was my proudest achievement as a player and team when we lifted the Champions League in Porto.

"I was a young boy at Chelsea with all the hopes and fears of a player starting his career, I'm grateful to the whole club for making my dream come true.

"Having spent 10 amazing years at this club, I felt now was the right time for a new beginning for me and my family. Mentally the last few months have been tough as it's not been an easy decision to leave this club and the fans.

"I'm not the most talkative person so sometimes people don't understand how much the club and the fans mean to me. I will miss the players, staff and everyone here. I wish the best for the club and the fans in the future."

Christensen made 93 Premier League appearances for Chelsea and spent two seasons on loan at Bundesliga outfit Borussia Monchengladbach between 2015 and 2017.

England concluded a series whitewash of New Zealand in fashion befitting the rest of the primitive Ben Stokes-Brendon McCullum era.

The new captain-coach combo have inspired England to three relentlessly entertaining Test displays – and now three wins, after Joe Root (86 not out) and Jonny Bairstow (71 no) clinched a seven-wicket victory on day five at Headingley.

England chased down 277 in the first Test and 299 in the second, and the target of 296 in Leeds never looked beyond them as they resumed on 183-2.

Rain delayed the start of play until after lunch on Monday, and Stokes' side quickly lost Ollie Pope (82) to a beauty from Tim Southee, but Bairstow picked up where he left off in his previous two innings (136 at Trent Bridge, 162 at Headingley).

His partnership with Root passed 50 inside 39 balls – the two Yorkshiremen thrilling a home crowd – but Bairstow was scoring at a far faster rate than his former captain.

Soon enough, he reached the half-century himself from just 30 deliveries – the second-quickest 50 by an England Test batsman.

Having squandered two reviews on Sunday attempting to remove Root, Kane Williamson's third went when Bairstow was caught off his forearm, rather than his glove. The batter was never concerned and swiftly resumed his assault on the New Zealand attack.

Fittingly, Bairstow finished with a four and then a six, with victory over the world Test champions wrapped up a little over an hour after the belated start.

Blistering Bairstow only behind Botham

No England player has profited as much as Bairstow from the freedom afforded him by Stokes and McCullum, with each knock seemingly better than the last.

There was little pressure on this occasion, with plenty of time and wickets in hand, and Bairstow fell agonisingly short of a long-standing Ian Botham record – his 28-ball half-century against India in 1981 briefly within reaching distance when Bairstow sent his 27th ball over the rope to reach 46.

A dot ball and a single followed before Bairstow passed 50 with his sixth four, to go with two maximums, after just 42 minutes.

India up next after unprecedented success

England have only until Friday before their next Test against India, but there will be few complaints, with the team quickly finding their rhythm under new leadership and relishing every new challenge.

India might be tempted to put England in to bat, for no target looks beyond Stokes' men when behind; they are the first Test team to chase down 250 three times in a single series.

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