Rohit Sharma inspired India to a 76-run thrashing of Ireland in the first of two Twenty20 internationals in Malahide.

Rohit crunched 97 off 61 deliveries and shared a mammoth 160-run opening stand with Shikhar Dhawan (74 off 45 balls) to lift the tourists to an imposing 208 for five after they had been put in to bat. 

t was a total that proved well beyond Ireland, who were undone by the spin of Kuldeep Yadav (four for 21) and Yuzvendra Chahal (three for 38) as they subsided to 132 for nine.  

India's first-wicket partnership underpinned their innings, Rohit and Dhawan finding and often clearing the boundary rope with ease as they put Ireland's bowlers to the sword.

India's Rohit Sharma hits a four 

Dhawan was caught by Stuart Thompson running in from long-off at the end of the 16th over while both Suresh Raina and Mahendra Singh Dhoni were caught in the deep off Peter Chase as they looked to further accelerate the run-rate.

Fast bowler Chase then cleaned up Rohit, who fell three runs short of a record-equalling third T20 international hundred, and was handed his fourth wicket when India captain Virat Kohli was pouched at deep midwicket.

The hosts lost wickets at regular intervals to undermine their chase, with only four batsmen reaching double figures.

Opener James Shannon was the sole Ireland batsman to provide any lasting resistance as he contributed 60 off only 35 balls, having been dropped on nought in the first over and then 17 in the fourth.

The teams face each other again in the second T20 game on Friday.