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1st Test, Galle, January 14 - 18, 2021, England tour of Sri Lanka
135 & 359
(T:74) 421 & 76/3

England won by 7 wickets

Player Of The Match
228 & 5 catches
Showing Newest
ENG 2nd Innings
Full commentary

10.50am: They think it's Galle over... it is now but we've got another Test starting here in a few days, so don't even think about going anywhere. George has whistled up a final wrap of the game, and we'll have more post-match treats for you to come. In the meantime, there's been some rain in Brisbane, but play is about to resume in the fourth Test between Australia and India, so why not get involved? Thanks from myself, Miller, Shashank and Thilak, your comments kept us going in the small hours, and it's been a lot of fun. Back for more on Friday. Cheerio!

10.38am: Time for the match presentations, starting with stand-in Sri Lanka captain Dinesh Chandimal: "I think it was a crucial toss to win, but the first innings cost us the game. You have to get a big total in the first innings, so that cost us on this kind of track. Credit to Thirimanne, Angelo, Kusal Janith, everyone did their bit as a batting unit in the second innings, and another 70-80 runs it could have been a different story. We have to take the positives and look to the next one. [What went wrong?] First day, coming from South Africa, we played like we were still there - and that cost us. We'll learn from our mistakes, did well in the second, so that's a plus. Stick to the team plan, and first innings will be crucial [in the second Test]."

England captain Joe Root is also named Man of the Match: "To come here with little preparation, and play in the manner we have has been really impressive. Great effort yesterday, not a lot fell for us, and for the two spinners to get five-fors is a brilliant effort, particularly with the little cricket they've played. Series like these are always tough but without the prep it's testament to their characters. To perform like we did after lunch was a good effort, we'll keep looking to get better, but a really pleasing start. [Spinners] Brilliant achievement, think the exciting thing is there's more to come from this group, most important thing is we have that attitude into the next Tests. [Bubbles] Number of challenges, really important looking to perform as a group, find ways to stay together, something we did well this game. [Innings] Thing that pleased me the most was my mindset, felt I got into a good place, managed to get my feet apart and get forward and back well, good balance between attack and defence and didn't waver. People have been critical of my conversion, so nice to go and make a big one."

10.22am: Nary a flutter, Bairstow and Lawrence knock 'em off and that's 1-0 in the series and 60 WTC points in the bag. England's second consecutive win in Galle, and fourth straight here in Sri Lanka - all set up by skittling the home side for 135, and then riding on Joe Root's fourth Test double, though the the second half of the match was more of an even contest. Sri Lanka couldn't pull out a miracle on the final morning, but they'll take plenty from their second-innings effort with the bat, and we know they have the slow-bowling tools to hurt England. The second Test, starting on Friday, should be a good'un

Simon Doull has grabbed Jonny Bairstow, who hit the winning runs on his comeback to the Test side, for a quick word: "Pretty tough [to bat], saw a lot more balls were raising off a length, some chunks coming out and it was tricky. Needed to be precise in your movements, bouncing more going forward so playing as much off the back foot in the second innings. [Test return?] Fantastic, what you want to do, and to be on the winning side. You know the challenges in the subcontinent. Rooty in the first innings, Leach and Bessy, and the quicks. Someone like Woody, the hard toil he's put in... Huge credit to those guys. [Final morning] You need 36, that's the be all and end all, doesn't matter how you get there. Have to be looking to score otherwise there's a good ball coming your way. Go out and be busy, running between the wickets is huge, pressuring them in the field. [Bubble life?] It's tricky, happy to have the Christmas break after six nights at home since August. You go from the ground back to the hotel and back again. We're not the only ones, staff and commentators, but it's tricky. Wins and moments like this make it special. [No crowds] We've got a lone ranger from the Barmy Army, fantastic he's up there and watching us. Fans back home, we thank you all for your support. All the hard work is hopefully being enjoyed."

Perera to Bairstow, FOUR runs

floated up and swept hard from middle and leg, that will do it for England! A seven-wicket win, and they can all go and sit on the beach (or not, as the case may be)

"Looks like a good debut for Lawrence. 73 first innings and what looks like a not out under a little bit of pressure after the 3 quick wickets." Spot on, Dawolf. Essex boy, innit?

Perera to Bairstow, no run

round the wicket, dobbed on the stumps and nudged to leg

Any nerves, England fans?

end of over 245 runs
ENG: 72/3CRR: 3.00 
Dan Lawrence21 (52b)
Jonny Bairstow31 (63b 1x4)
Lasith Embuldeniya 12-3-29-2
Dilruwan Perera 11-2-30-0
Embuldeniya to Lawrence, no run

flighted, gives it a wristy slap to extra cover

Embuldeniya to Lawrence, 2 runs

spinning away outside off, Lawrence goes back and cuts behind point... almost there now

PhilFour: "I turn into a pumpkin in less than 15 minutes if England don't wrap it up!! " Ah, fair enough

Embuldeniya to Bairstow, 1 run

tossed up, drifting a little on to leg stump, YJB pokes into the leg side and they scamper through as the bowler gives chase

Embuldeniya to Bairstow, no run

skids into the front pad, Dickwella leads a screeched appeal... looked like some bat on that

Embuldeniya to Bairstow, no run

still plenty of spin there for Embuldeniya, ragging into the gloves as Bairstow thinks better of cutting

Embuldeniya to Bairstow, 2 runs

floated up and twocked through the covers for a couple

England have dug (their way out of a hole) for victory here, you'd think... seven more needed

end of over 234 runs
ENG: 67/3CRR: 2.91 
Jonny Bairstow28 (59b 1x4)
Dan Lawrence19 (50b)
Dilruwan Perera 11-2-30-0
Lasith Embuldeniya 11-3-24-2

"Not long now: 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, job done," coos Dave Fern, contentedly

Perera to Bairstow, 1 run

full and flighted, reverse-swept for one out to deep backward point

Perera to Bairstow, no run

pushed through, turning on the stumps and tapped down to leg

Perera to Bairstow, 2 runs

walks down and flicks at this one, skims an inside edge past the diving leg slip and he'll scurry back

Perera to Bairstow, no run

lobbed up from round the wicket, Bairstow strides out and prods it away, does some gardening in his no-nonsense Yorkshire style

Applause from the England balcony for the fifty stand, I think they're sitting comfortably up there now

Perera to Lawrence, 1 run

flighted, he's forward, shows this plenty of the maker's name in bunting to long-on

Perera to Lawrence, no run

tossed up and clipped to midwicket

And Dilruwan Perera also switches ends. Bit harsh on Hasaranga...

end of over 223 runs
ENG: 63/3CRR: 2.86 
Jonny Bairstow25 (55b 1x4)
Dan Lawrence18 (48b)
Lasith Embuldeniya 11-3-24-2
Wanindu Hasaranga 1-0-4-0
Embuldeniya to Bairstow, no run

floated up and he's out to meet it, blocked calmly

"Pick, pick, pick...England should just slam the door shut on this...get some boundaries...or, A boundary." Erm, you do know they've got about 90 overs left in which to get this done, PhilFour?

Embuldeniya to Bairstow, 2 runs

skips down, Embuldeniya shortens his length, spins to hit the outside edge but squirts wide of gully for a couple more

Embuldeniya to Lawrence, 1 run

tossed up outside off stump and he's forward to slice the hands through a drive

Embuldeniya to Lawrence, no run

spinning sharply with Lawrence trying to commit, beats the outside edge

Embuldeniya to Lawrence, no run

comes across and carefully taps another one away

Embuldeniya to Lawrence, no run

lobbed up on the stumps, blocked

Change of ends for Embuldeniya

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