Galle [Sri Lanka], January 25 (ANI): Dominic Sibley hit an unbeaten 56 and Jos Buttler made a 48-ball 46 as England chased down 164 to defeat Sri Lanka by six wickets in the second Test on Monday at the Galle International Stadium to clinch the series 2-0.
On day four, England spinners Jack Leach and Dominic Bess spun a web on Sri Lanka's batters and the duo took eight wickets between themselves as the hosts were bundled out for 126 in the second innings, setting England a target of 164. The visitors then found themselves in a spot of bother at 89/4 with Joe Root back in the hut, but Sibley and Buttler stitched an unbeaten stand of 75 to take England over the line by six wickets.
Chasing 164, England once again got off to a poor start as Lasith Embuldeniya dismissed Zack Crawley (13) and as a result, Dom Sibley and Jonny Bairstow were tasked with ensuring that the visitors did not fall behind in the game. Both batsmen ensured that the side had nine wickets in hand going into the final session, needing 118 more runs to register a win.
Bairstow was playing aggressively and he brought out all kinds of sweeps (traditional and reverse) to throw Embuldeniya off his line, but this attacking instinct brought about his dismissal as well and he was sent back to the pavilion after playing a knock of 29. Joe Root (11) and Daniel Lawrence (2) also failed to get going, and England was reduced to 89/4, still needing 75 runs for the win.
In the end, Buttler and Sibley ensured that England did not suffer any more hiccups and England registered a confortable win.
Earlier, resuming their second innings with a slender lead of 37 runs, Sri Lanka batters displayed poor game awareness and the side was restricted to 67/6 at the lunch break. England spinners who failed to take a single wicket in the first innings, turned their fortunes around in the second innings as Jack Leach and Dominic Bess took six wickets between themselves in the first session.
Kusal Perera (14), Lahiru Thirimanne (13), Oshando Fernando (3), Angelo Mathews (5), Dinesh Chandimal (9), and Niroshan Dickwella (7) all failed to leave a mark with the bat and Sri Lanka was left starring down the barrel. At the lunch break, Dilruwan Perera (1*) and Ramesh Mendis (11*) were at the crease for the hosts.
In the second session, Embuldeniya played a crucial knock of 40 runs off just 42 balls, and this innings helped Sri Lanka extend their lead above 150. Skipper Root took the final two wickets as Sri Lanka's innings ended at 126, setting a target of 164 for England.
Brief Scores: Sri Lanka 381 and 126 (Lasith Embuldeniya 40, Dominic Bess 4-49); England 344 and 164/4 (Dominic Sibley 56*, Jos Buttler 46*; Lasith Embuldeniya 3-73). (ANI)