England duo battle to save Test

Burnley and Pendle Citizen: Moeen Ali, left, and Joe Root played conservatively to take the score to 83 for five at lunch Moeen Ali, left, and Joe Root played conservatively to take the score to 83 for five at lunch

A combination of obdurate batting and handily-timed rain saw England reach lunch on the final day against Sri Lanka without losing a wicket.

Having slumped to 57 for five chasing 350 on the fourth evening, the hosts appeared to be in a tailspin and on the road to a first ever home series defeat to Sri Lanka.

But Joe Root and Moeen Ali played conservatively and without major problems to take the score to 83 without incident.

The rain then came, first a light shower then a more substantial downpour and forced the umpires to take an early lunch at 12.30pm.

Although neither batsman was being tempted into pursuing the unlikely winning mark, Moeen kept the scoreboard ticking over with 22 runs, including three fours off Dhammika Prasad.

Root was playing an entirely defensive hand, though, and faced 42 balls for three runs.

A small psychological barrier was passed when Prasad, who claimed four wickets in a fine spell on day four, was taken from the attack without adding to his haul.

Spinner Rangana Herath, meanwhile, was restricted to a couple of half-hearted lbw appeals.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree