Former skipper Angelo Mathews scored an unbeaten 115-ball 85 to guide Sri Lanka to a modest 232 for nine against hosts England in their World Cup fixture here Friday. Mathews starred in two crucial partnerships, adding 71 and 57 runs with Kusal Mendis (46) and Dhananjaya de Silva (29) for the fourth and sixth wickets, respectively, as Sri Lanka recovered from a disastrous start. Mathews had five hits to the fence and a six in his innings. Avishka Fernando, too, contributed to the team score with a 39-ball 49.
England dished out a disciplined bowling effort with the pace duo of Jofra Archer (3/52) and Mark Wood (3/40) taking three wickets each. Adil Rashid (2/45) took two wickets, while Chris Woakes (1/22) scalped one. Electing to bat, Sri Lanka were reduced to 3 for 2 in 2.2 overs after Archer and Woakes struck early, removing Dimuth Karunaratne (1) and Kusal Perera (2) in three balls. Fernando then blasted six fours and two sixes, sharing some valuable runs with Mendis. But an upper cut gone wrong saw Sri Lanka lose Avishka Fernando (49) and slip to 62 for three in 12.5 overs.
Mathews joined Mendis and brought up the team hundred in 23.2 overs. However, leg-spinner Rashid struck twice, removing Mendis and new man Jeevan Mendis (0), as Sri Lanka slumped to 133 for five in the 30th over. Mathews and Dhananjaya then resurrected Sri Lanka and took the team close to the 200-mark. Once Dhananjaya was removed by Archer in the 44th over, it was a lonely battle for Mathews.