IT WAS a shame England got so close to a draw in the end, but when you are 57-5 against that Sri Lankan bowling attack then defeat can come as no great surprise.
Sri Lanka aren’t a bad side, but in home conditions England’s recent track record is top class – they’ve taken apart Australia and India – so this is a very big reverse for coach Peter Moores.
England won the toss, they chose to put the tourists in to bat; they played on their terms. Yet they came up short – a long way short. The problem was the batting, and specifically the top order. Having bowled Sri Lanka out for 257 in the first innings, England should have reached 450 or 500 and made it impossible to lose. That was the time to keep their foot on the opponent’s head but they failed.
He wasn’t the only one, but captain Alastair Cook did not perform again and his form is now a major problem. There are only two weeks until the first Test against India, and England have a lot of soul-searching to do.
Andy Lloyd is a former England Test cricketer who has also served as captain and chairman of Warwickshire.