England continued their dominance over Sri Lanka in white-ball cricket with an emphatic 30-run victory over the Islanders in the only T20I between the two sides in Colombo.
England extended their series-winning run against Sri Lanka with a resounding victory in the first and only T20I between the two teams after having already secured an emphatic 3-1 victory in the recently-concluded ODI series.
After being inserted to bat first, England got off to a flying start thanks to a blistering innings from opener Jason Roy. England’s one-man show powered the ball to all parts as he smashed a rapid 69 off just 36 balls, including four fours and six sixes.
Although the Sri Lankan bowlers regularly picked up wickets throughout the innings, the English batsmen continued to pile on the pressure even after a rain interruption during the first innings.
It was Moeen Ali and Ben Stokes (26 off 27 balls, one four, one six) who resumed after the break looking to take on the Sri Lankan bowlers. Ali raced to 27 off 11 balls (one four, three sixes) before being bowled out by off-spinner Dhananjaya de Silva as England made their way to a competitive 187-8 in their 20 overs.
Sri Lanka’s response got off to a poor start with the loss of both their opening batsmen at the hands of the recalled Joe Denly who returned to the team after a 384-match absence. Adil Rashid (4-0-11-3) was also at his best as he ripped through the island nation’s middle order to reduce the home team to 77-4 in the 11th over.
Sri Lankan captain Thisara Perera, batting at six, offered the most resistance from the home side as he powered himself to a quickfire 57 off 31 balls – including one four and a massive six sixes – before he eventually fell to Denly in the final over of the innings.
Denly – who last played on the international stage for England in February 2010 – showed no signs of ring-rust thanks to a dominant performance with bat and ball to earn himself the Man of the Match accolade. He scored 20 off 17 runs in the first innings before finishing with 4-19 in his four overs after destructive bowling spells at the top and the end of the innings.
Sri Lanka and England will next face off in Galle on 6 November in the first Test of the three-match series.
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