Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Joe Denly starred in his first Twenty20 International in more than eight years as he took four wickets to lead England to a 30-run win over Sri Lanka in the one-off Twenty20 International in Colombo.
Denly was well supported by opening batsman Jason Roy, who walloped a 36-ball 69.
Being put in to bat first, England got off to a quick start before opener Jos Buttler was caught by Sri Lanka captain Dinesh Chandimal at cover off the bowling of Amila Aponso for 13.
Aponso struck again three balls later as he trapped Alex Hales lbw for four runs.
England skipper Eoin Morgan only made 11 before he was run out by Lasith Malinga.
Roy and Ben Stokes stabilised the innings with a 47-run partnership before Roy was caught behind off the bowling of Lakshan Sandakan for 69, which came off 36 balls and included four boundaries and six sixes.
Moeen Ali made an 11-ball 27 before being clean bowled by Dhananjaya de Silva, while Denly scored 20 prior to being dismissed by Malinga.
With Stokes also making 26, England finished on 187/8 off their 20 overs.
Malinga and Aponso picked up two wickets apiece, while Sandakan, De Silva and Isuru Udana chipped in with one wicket each.
Chasing 188 to win, Sri Lanka were dealt a big blow on the sixth ball of their inning as opener Kusal Mendis was clean bowled by Denly for one run.
Niroshan Dickwella, who opened the batting with Mendis, suffered the same fate in Denly’s next over.
Chandimal managed to score a 20-ball 26 before he was sent packing by Adil Rashid.
Rashid later struck twice in the same over as he removed debutant Kamindu Mendis and De Silva for 24 and 17 respectively.
Sri Lanka continued to lose wickets at regular intervals, but all-rounder Thisara Perera provided a spark of hope with his 31-ball 57, which included a boundary and six sixes.
Ultimately, his knock went in vain as Sri Lanka were bowled out for 157.
Denly was the most successful bowler with four wickets, while Rashid took three, Chris Jordan got two and Liam Plunkett claimed one.
Denly was named Man of the Match.