Sri Lankans Fight Back To Beat England Lions
Sri Lankans 266 & 448 beat
England Lions 493-8 dec. & 183 by 38 runs
Tour game, Derby
The touring Sri Lankans snatched a 38-run win victory over the England Lions despite being asked to follow in a four-day tour game in Derby.
The Lions, boasting a line-up including Test-capped batsmen Eoin Morgan and Ravi Bopara, were bowled out for 183 on the final day having been asked to chase 222 to win.
Captain James Hildreth top scored with 38 as they folded in the face of a concerted attack from Sri Lanka's bowlers, led by Nuwan Pradeep, who returned figures of four for 29 while Dilhara Fernando took three for 33, including the wicket of Morgan, preferred in the Test squad to Bopara, for four.
The final innings completed a remarkable recovery from the tourists, who were given the run-around for the first two days when England piled up 493 for eight declared and then dismissed Sri Lanka for 266, Hildreth enforcing the follow-on.
Morgan made 193, Samit Patel 119 and James Taylor impressed with 76 as a makeshift opener for the Lions before Jade Dernbach returned five for 44 as only Suraj Randiv, who made 76 not out, offered much resistance.
The vital third innings saw the Sri Lankan batsmen show their class with openers Tharanga Paranavitana (125) and Tillakaratne Dilshan (119) putting on 200 for the first wicket and Thilan Samaraweera making 74.
Then it was over to the bowlers to close out the game and just five days before the first ball is bowled in Cardiff, they sent a very strong message to the rest of England squad.
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© Cricket World 2011