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Sri Lanka v England - third ODI

Over-by-over commentary from the Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium.

  • Over 4 – Eng 24-0 (Cook 13, Moeen Ali 11)
    Dilshan offers a touch of width and Ali doesn’t miss out, opening the face to go up and over extra cover for four. Ali punches another couple in that direction off the back foot and then advances and rather mows a single out to deep midwicket. Cook calls for assistance from the dressing room, pointing to his dodgy back, and Bell brings out the necessary pills and water.
    12/3/2014 3:54:18 PM
  • Over 5 – Eng 33-0 (Cook 16, Moeen Ali 17)
    A clear grimace from Cook as he picks up a couple on the leg-side – his back clearly troubling him now – and the batsmen meet in the middle presumably to rule out any quick singles. That seems the last thing on Ali’s mind as he throws his hands at a wider ball from Mathews and spanks it high over cover for six. That was an extraordinary shot.
    12/3/2014 3:57:56 PM
  • [ianbotham] This is a good start from England. Alastair Cook has been impressive on the drive and that was an extraordinary shot from Moeen Ali in the last over.

    12/3/2014 4:00:34 PM

  • Cook's back is giving him a bit of gyp - he's knocked back a tablet for that - but he is middling a few, too. 
    12/3/2014 4:01:14 PM
  • Over 6 – ENG 41-0 (Cook 22, Moeen Ali 18)
    Ajantha Mendis comes into the attack for Sri Lanka, but Cook dispatches him to the boundary second ball with a beautiful late cut. The left-handed pair then milk Mendis for singles the rest of the over. The kind of over that’s needed throughout if they’re to chase this down.
    12/3/2014 4:02:31 PM
  • 12/3/2014 4:03:02 PM
  • Over 7 – ENG 45-0 (Cook 26, Moeen Ali 18)
    Another cut from Cook goes to the boundary. Less pretty and a bit more fortuitous this one, but four runs all the same. Dilshan has dismissed the captain in both games this series and looks to be more threatening than Mendis at the other end again.
    12/3/2014 4:05:32 PM
  • Over 8 – ENG 55-0 (Cook 27, Moeen Ali 27)
    Ali launches one high and hansome over cow corner for six. Becoming a bit of a trademark shot for him that one. 10 from the over.
    12/3/2014 4:09:37 PM
  • 12/3/2014 4:12:55 PM

  • This doesn't make glorious reading for England's captain - or our commentator! 
    12/3/2014 4:14:14 PM
  • Over 9 – ENG 61-0 (Cook 32, Moeen Ali 28)
    Jeevan Mendis on to bowl now. Can he cause more problems than Ajantha? Doesn’t look like it – Cook sweeps one fine to the boundary which pitched outside leg with the third ball of the over. But the legspinner recovers to find his line to bowl out three dot balls to close the over.
    12/3/2014 4:14:14 PM
  • Over 10 – ENG 76-0 (Cook 33, Moeen Ali 42)
    What was I saying about Ali’s trademark shot? He smashes another six over the legside boundary – this time off the returning Dilshan. He then gets six more, over the offside this time. 15 off the over, England cruising.
    12/3/2014 4:17:08 PM
  • [davidlloyd] A rocking start is this and it’s Moeen Ali to the fore."
    12/3/2014 4:17:49 PM
  • Over 11 – ENG 79-0 (Cook 34, Moeen Ali 44)
    An uneventful over from Jeethan, especially given the fireworks at the other end. Just three runs from it.
    12/3/2014 4:20:41 PM
  • [wicket] Cook c Sangakkara b Prasad 34 – ENG 84-1
    Cook goes, feathering a catch behind to Sangakkara off Prasad as he prodded forward outside off-stump.
    12/3/2014 4:25:45 PM

  • Cook hoped Prasad's foot had slid too far - but he was out of luck.
    12/3/2014 4:27:00 PM
  • Over 12 – ENG 88-1 (Hales 4, Moeen Ali 49)
    Sri Lanka are throwing everything at Moeen Ali, or at least every bowler at him. Dhammika Prasad tries his hand this time, but Ali pulls him for four more, albeit not quite as square of the wicket as he intended with the shot. But he has more luck with captain Cook on strike, dismissing him first ball before Hales rounds off an eventful over with another boundary.
    12/3/2014 4:28:14 PM
  • Over 13 – ENG 97-1 (Moeen Ali 56, Hales 5)
    Moeen moves to his fifty with a single from the first ball of the over. He then dances down the track to hit another six over long-on, before being hit on the pads with the final ball of the over. They reviewed it but Moeen got a little inside edge on it. Not out.
    12/3/2014 4:31:38 PM

  • Moeen likes this opening lark... 

    But he was thankful he got an inside edge on this one before it connected with his pad.
    12/3/2014 4:33:40 PM
  • Over 14 – ENG 102-1 (Moeen Ali 58, Hales 7)
    Prasad thinks he’s got Moeen with a faint edge on a bouncer at the end of the over. But the umpire says no and they’ve used their only review. Another appeal ends the over, this time for lbw. Again not out, so panic over.
    12/3/2014 4:39:55 PM
  • [wicket] Moeen Ali run out (Herath/Sangakkara) 58 – ENG 103-2
    Catastrophic run-out for England. The danger-man Ali goes.
    12/3/2014 4:45:05 PM

  • Here's evidence of the mis-communication that saw Moeen run out.
    12/3/2014 4:46:10 PM
  • Over 15 – ENG 103-2 (Hales 8, Root 0)
    Moeen was looking a little iffy for a couple of overs, swinging wildly at every delivery. But he didn’t deserve to depart in that fashion. He almost runs two as Hales stays his ground, and is run-out by a mile. Great innings, but England have stalled a bit.
    12/3/2014 4:47:32 PM
  • Nick Knight is in no doubt who's to blame for Moeen's exit...
    [nickknight] That’s an aberration from Hales."
    12/3/2014 4:47:55 PM
  • 5 sixes by an England ODI opener: only AJ Strauss v Bang (Edgbaston) 2010 and Moeen Ali (in 1st ODI v SL) have done that previously
  • MOEEN ALI RUN OUT - watch his mix-up with Hales here, if you dare!
    12/3/2014 4:51:00 PM
  • Over 16 – ENG 107-2 (Hales 9, Root 2)
    Sri Lanka are dragging this back well, Prasad looking particularly troublesome. He has the new batsman Root playing and missing a couple of times in the over and traps him on the back foot with one that jags back from outside off. But it’s too high and the appeal is optimistic.
    12/3/2014 4:51:35 PM
  • Over 17 – ENG 115-2 (Hales 15, Root 3)
    Right, England still need a few but they do bat deep, with Chris Woakes at 10. Let’s hope we don’t need him. Hales defends Perera’s first, perhaps still fretting about the large part he played in Moeen’s run out. The Notts man swings freely next ball, though, pinging the ball into the on-side for a single, while, later in the over, he cuts a marvellous four. Perera appeals for a glove behind but the umpire is unmoved, apart from signalling wide. A single concludes the over.

    12/3/2014 4:58:51 PM
  • Over 18 – ENG 119-2 (Hales 17, Root 5)
    Prasad clubbed a few sixes with the willow but he’s doing his day job okay here with the ball, offering up little filth. Root could do with a knock to silence his one or two doubters and he’s started serenely, milking singles.

    12/3/2014 5:03:37 PM
  • Over 19 – ENG 127-2 (Hales 18, Root 11)
    Root accumulates a couple from Herath’s canny spin but can’t connect with ball two, a rank, wide one. Root’s young legs go into overdrive to nab a few more, before he whips one off his pads to reach double digits. Hales collects another. Root does the same. A good eight-run over.
    12/3/2014 5:07:41 PM
  • @grahamwhiterose : @BumbleCricket surely room for Gary Ballance in the World Cup squad any thoughts ?” Agree
  • Over 20 – ENG 130-2 (Hales 19, Root 13)
    England are, say it quietly, picking off this total with apparent ease. Can Mathews’ seam put a spanner in the works? Nope, though he does push Root back on his heels with a sharp one. 

    12/3/2014 5:11:32 PM
  • Over 21 – ENG 136-2 (Hales 20, Root 18)
    Root is mastering Herath, tickling one to the ropes and then bounding through for a single. Hales ricochets one into his pads and scampers – see, he can do it – for another.

    12/3/2014 5:15:07 PM
  • 12/3/2014 5:17:17 PM
  • [wicket] Hales c A Mendis b Mathews 27 – Eng 144-3
    After being dropped and battering a six, Hales holes out to Ajantha Mendis at mid-on.

    12/3/2014 5:18:39 PM
  • Hales hangs his head as he trudges off, replaced by Bopara

    12/3/2014 5:19:52 PM
  • Over 22 – ENG 144-3 (Root 19, Bopara 0)
    Hales is given a life after his clip towards Thisara Perera’s paws is spilled. He makes something of that reprieve, too, by clubbing a six on the leg side – but departs shortly after. Bopara leaps above Morgan to enter the fray at No 5.

    12/3/2014 5:20:42 PM
  • [wicket] Bopara c Sangakkara b Herath 6 – ENG 151-4
    Great work from Sangakkara, who reads Bopara’s sweep to catch the Essex star out. A first failure of the series for Ravi.

    12/3/2014 5:24:11 PM
  • Over 23 – ENG 152-4 (Root 20, Morgan 1)
    England require less than 100 and they’ll get there quickly if Bopara wallops sixes like the one he has just pummeled down the ground. Damn! There goes that plan thanks to the pesky Sangakkara. Morgan’s next in and plays out Herath’s over sensibly.

    12/3/2014 5:26:22 PM
  • [wicket] Morgan c T Perera b Mathews 1 – ENG 152-5
    Morgan rolls out the hook shot – to poor effect. He skies Mathew’s slowie up into the gods and Perera snares the ball upon its descent. 

    12/3/2014 5:28:40 PM
  • Eoin Morgan's last 15 ODI innings - 279 runs, HS 40, avge 18.60
  • [nickknight] The dangerous Eoin Morgan was out-thought there. I say dangerous, he hasn’t been dangerous for quite some time. In the last 15 ODIs he’s averaged 18.6.




    12/3/2014 5:31:01 PM
  • Over 24 – ENG 154-5 (Root 21, Buttler 1)
    Sri Lanka are gaining traction here, more so after the exit of the once-lethal Morgan. What has happened to his end-of-innings onslaughts? Buttler is more than capable of them, though, as Sri Lanka know all too well. Lord’s last May, anybody? An absolute beaut from Mathews closes out the over, whistling past Root’s edge.

    12/3/2014 5:32:35 PM
  • Over 25 – ENG 158-5 (Root 23, Buttler 3)
    England aren’t looking to go big following Morgan’s departure. There are merely taking the singles on offer, of which there are four from Herath’s latest over.

    12/3/2014 5:35:11 PM
  • Over 26 – ENG 162-5 (Root 25, Buttler 5)
    With England needing 70-odd, Ian Ward and Russel Arnold are debating the state of the game and who’s on top. Just England? The lengthy batting line-up would suggest so and Buttler and Root’s singles will help their cause no end.
    12/3/2014 5:38:46 PM
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