Play resumed 10 minutes later than scheduled after morning showers at Lord's but Ireland wasted no time at all, Thompson charging in from the Pavilion End and swinging one into England's number 11.
Stone's defences were not up to the task and his leg stump went cartwheeling, leaving the home side all out for 303.
Chasing down the runs was not expected to be an easy task, particularly given the dominance of ball over bat throughout the game to date.
But for Ireland the opportunity was huge – a chance to knock off their nearest neighbours at the home of cricket on just their third appearance on the Test stage.
Given the vast differences in experience, resources and remuneration that exist between the rival XIs it would go down as one of the biggest upsets in cricket history.
With an Ashes campaign beginning next week, the stakes for England were also running high.