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Day two

Our resort Weligama is some 45 minutes away from Galle where the Test ground is situated but it’s a pleasant coastal drive past surfers and fishermen some on stilts.

It would be even more pleasant but for the random style of driving.

Stray dogs, three wheelers called tuk-tuks, scooters, buses and coaches all compete for pole position on the single lane road.

The gaudy advertising hoardings like Hammer Film posters above the corrugated shops roadside contrast  poorly with the soft blue waves of the Indian Ocean.

It was emphatically England’s day and it looks like we have unearthed a diamond in Ben Foakes.

Between 2012 and 2015 England did not manage one stumping but Foakes took his with aplomb as well as his century.

The track did not turn as much as anticipated but Moeen Ali took 4 wickets on it.

Two more strong sessions from England and the lead should be unassailable.

That said, this is a poor Sri Lankan side feeling the loss of Sangakkara and Jayawardene who incidentally own the best restaurant in Sri Lanka.

It’s a slightly badly balanced England side with so many wicket keepers and all rounders. Jonny Bairstow will do well to get back  into the side and Moeen Ali is no three. However, you can only beat the opposition in front of  you and England look well capable of that.

As ever the Sri Lankans are delightful, forever smiling and helpful. Even the armed soldier in the speedy response unit in fatigues with his AK 47 guarding the player’s entry to the pitch flashed me a gleaming smile of welcome.

About Douglas Heath

Douglas Heath began his lifelong love affair with cricket as an 8 year-old schoolboy playing OWZAT? Whilst listening to a 160s Ashes series on the radio. He later became half-decent at doing John Arlott impressions and is a member of Middlesex County Cricket Club. He holds no truck at all with the T20 version on the game. More Posts