The visitors were struggling at 113 for 5 at Lunch. However, it was then time for debutante Ben Foakes to display an absolute masterclass. Foakes played sensibly to remain unbeaten on 87 off 184 balls.
He got support from who else but Sam Curran. Jos Butler (37), Sam Curran (48) and Adil Rashid (35) ensured that England do not fold up cheaply.
Earlier, Keaton Jennings repaid the faith of the team management to some extent by moving to a breezy 46. Joe Root also looked good as long as it lasted for his 35 runs.
The pick of the bowlers for Sri Lanka was Dilruwan Perera who is one wicket short of a fifer. Akila Dananjaya showed potential but he has to gain more control over his bowling and cut down on his variations to become a formidable Test bowler.
Sri Lanka would desperately want to wipe off England as soon as possible but what stands between that is Ben Foakes. A Foakes looking for his century on debut.
There is absolutely no doubt that England can find themselves in a commanding position at the end of day two. The first inning runs, especially on a spinning track, are always golddust.
Sri Lanka- Dimuth Karunaratne, Kaushal Silva, Kusal Mendis, Dinesh Chandimal, Angelo Mathews, Niroshan Dickwella, Dhananjaya de Silva, Dilruwan Perera, Akila Dananjaya, Suranga Lakmal, Rangana Herath
England- Keaton Jennings, Rory Burns, Moeen Ali, Joe Root, Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler, Ben Foakes, Sam Curran, Adil Rashid, Jack Leach, James Anderson
Cricket Betting Tips and Match Predictions*
Who will win? – England
Top Batsman (Runs Scored) –Dinesh Chandimal (Sri Lanka), Ben Foakes (England)
Top Bowler (Wickets taken) – Dilruwan Perera (Sri Lanka), Moeen Ali (England)
Most Fours – Niroshan Dickwella (Sri Lanka), Ben Foakes (England)
Team Scores Batting at the end of Day 1– England 330+ all out, Sri Lanka 200+ for 4
*NB these predictions may be changed nearer the start of the match once the final starting teams have been announced and we will be running ‘In–Play’ features soon, so stay tuned.
© Cricket World 2018