England took all ten Sri Lankan wickets on the fourth day of the first Test to claim a win – their maiden Test victory in Galle.
England began the Test in poor fashion, losing five wickets before lunch on the first day, but from the moment Ben Foakes walked out at 103/5 on Day One, England dominated and thoroughly deserved their win, which came by an impressive margin of 211 runs.
Joe Root’s men hadn’t won an away Test since defeating Bangladesh in 2016, so they’ll be delighted to go 1-0 up in the three-match series.
Here’s how the England players rated in the Test.
Rory Burns - 4
Burns, on debut, scored nine runs in the first innings before he was caught down the leg side, and he made a steady 23 in the second before horrendously running himself out. He’ll hope for better games in the future.
Keaton Jennings - 10
192 runs in the match from Jennings, including a much-needed century in the second innings. The opener was under pressure to deliver and he did just that. His second innings was as good as you’ll see from an Englishman in the sub-continent.
Moeen Ali - 7
Moeen Ali the number three batsman was, quite frankly, rubbish in this game. He was bowled first ball in the first innings and played a shocking shot in the second. However, Moeen Ali the frontline spinner was very, very good. Whilst he will bowl the odd shocking ball, he gets turn and bamboozles batsmen. He took four wickets in the first innings and another four in the second.
Joe Root - 4
A combined 38 runs in the match isn’t a great return for Root, although he did get a very good ball in the second innings. He gets a few extra marks for his captaincy which was, for the most part, very good.
Ben Stokes - 8
Played one of the worst sweep shots of all time in the first innings, but made up for that in the second with a very well made 62. He took just one wicket in the game, but his aggressive spell in the second innings could have brought him a few more with a bit of luck. Dropped a sitter at slip in the second innings but didn’t let that affect him as he held on to take three good catches later on. Ended the game with a sharp throw to run out Rangana Herath.
Jos Buttler - 7
Scores of 38 and 35 might not stand out on the scorecard but both innings were well played and although the scores were similar, they came in contrasting circumstances. The first innings knock was a patient one which helped England get out of a hole. The second was much more aggressive as the visitors looked to set up a declaration.
Ben Foakes - 10
What a debut! His first innings hundred was the key factor in England’s win as without it, they’d have been bowled out very cheaply. He then came to the middle in the second innings and smashed 37 from 34 balls as England looked for quick runs. He was also hugely impressive behind the stumps, taking catches, stumping Dinesh Chandimal and he was deservedly involved in the run out to end the game as he quickly whipped off the bails to run out Herath.
Sam Curran - 8
Only bowled 11 overs in the game, but he did take an early wicket in the first Sri Lankan innings to help get England on a roll. However, he gets an eight because of his first innings batting. He came in at 164/6 and left at 252/7 having scored a very well made, and very crucial, 48 runs.
Adil Rashid - 8
Took just three wickets in the game but he bowled as well as he has done in the England Test side. Also, his knock with the bat in the first innings, where he smashed 35 from 38 balls, was a key factor to England making a decent score.
Jack Leach - 9
Took five wickets in the game, including an absolute beauty to remove Chandimal in the second innings. The most impressive part of Leach’s game was his control. England haven’t had a spinner who could go at under three runs an over since Graeme Swann, and Leach provided that control for his captain. A very good return to the side after his injury.
James Anderson - 7
There won’t be many Test matches where Jimmy Anderson only takes one wicket but such is life in the sub-continent. He only bowled 22 overs but Anderson was as good as ever and set England on their way by getting Dimuth Karunaratne caught out with his second ball of the match.