After losing a rain affected game to England, hosts Sri Lankans came back well in the fourth ODI to take a lead of 3-1 in the seven match series after putting up a team effort at RPS, Colombo.
In the absence of regular captain Cook, Eoin Morgan captained England and chosen to bat first after winning the toss. However, England lost wicket of Alex Hales in the second over itself with Prasad sending the lanky Opener for a Golden Duck. Soon inform Moeen Ali departed for a run-a-ball 19. But young guns Joe Root and James Taylor, who came in place of Cook took the responsibility of reconstruction of the innings. They both kept the scoreboard ticking with rotating strike and with some good running between the wickets.
They shared a stand of 93 runs off 109 balls after which Root departed for 38. However, Taylor and Bopara continued to kept the scoreboard moving before batting powerplay broken the momentum in which both the batsmen were dismissed. Taylor, who was playing in his 3rd ODI brought up his maiden half century and departed after scoring a well made 90 and Bopara was cleaned up by Dilshan for 22. Stand in Captain Eoin Morgan, who had a poor series till then finally came to rescue with a quick fire innings despite of losing wickets at other end. Morgan smashed 62 in just 47 balls with help of 4 fours and 3 sixes before getting out on last ball and helped England finish on 265 all out.
Chasing 266 to win, Sri Lankan openers got starts but failed to convert. Dilshan fell for 16 in 6th over and Perera got out to Ali for 31 in 15th over. The stage was set for another Sangakkara-Jayawardene partnership as they led the chase with a solid stand. The put on 96 for the 3rd wicket in 103 balls before Mahela was cleaned up by Jordan for 44. Later England bowled economically as Sanga-Mathews stand of 49 came off 59 balls before well set Sangakkara departed for 81 conceding 3rd wicket to Jordan.
England tried to put on pressure over Sri Lanka as the required run rate raised over 7 but 45th over by Steven Finn gave away 15 runs as Sri Lanka felt easy from them. However, England kept fighting to defend it but Sri Lankan Captain, Angelo Mathew’s solid 51 helped his team to seal the game by 6 wickets with 2 balls to spare.
Sri Lanka: 267 for 4 in 49.4 overs (KC Sangakkara 86, AD Mathews 51*; CJ Jordan 2/35, MM Ali 1/44) beat England: 265 all out in 50 overs (JWA Taylor 90, EJG Morgan 62; HMRKB Herath 3/36, BAW Mendis 3/56) by 6 wickets