Sri Lanka defeat England Lions in Test warm-up

Tour match, Derby (day four):
Sri Lanka 266 & 448 beat England Lions 493-8d & 183 by 38 runs
Match scorecard
Sri Lanka celebrate victory at Derby
Nuwan Pradeep took four wickets as Sri Lanka claimed a welcome victory

Sri Lanka achieved a morale-boosting win ahead of the Test series against England as they beat the Lions by 38 runs at Derby.

After following on, the tourists were all out for 448, setting England's second-stringers a target of 222.

The game turned after a three-wicket burst by Dilhara Fernando, whose victims included Eoin Morgan for four.

Lions skipper James Hildreth made 38 but Nuwan Pradeep claimed 4-29 as they were bowled out for 183.

It was a remarkable effort by Sri Lanka, who had trailed by 227 runs on first innings and were only 165 ahead when they began the final day on 392-6.

After being included in England's 12 for the opening Test, pace bowler Steven Finn removed Thilan Samaweera, lbw for 74, but it was Surrey seamer Jade Dernbach who cleaned up the rest of the tail, his 4-94 giving him impressive match figures of 9-138.

The Lions soon lost James Adams, leg-before to Sri Lanka skipper Tillakaratne Dilshan's off-spin for 11 and Fernando then made a crucial contribution by dismissing James Taylor, Ravi Bopara and Morgan - the latter preferred to Bopara in the Test squad - in the space of two overs.

Hildreth and Samit Patel added 57 for the fifth wicket, but having been dropped on 25, the latter fell lbw on 35 to Pradeep, who followed up by disposing of Jonny Bairstow in similar fashion.

And Hildreth became Pradeep's third victim when he was caught at deep mid-wicket by a tumbling Dinesh Chandimal and the tail did not detain Sri Lanka for long as the tourists wrapped up the victory.

Hildreth said: "We came up just short, but played some really good cricket and got ourselves into a winning position.

"We then made it hard work and ended up being beaten. It's just application in the end - we should have chased down that total - but we can still take a lot from those first two days."

Hildreth expects Morgan to prove himself again in the Test series, and the overlooked Bopara to respond to his omission in the right way too.

"Morgan batted beautifully in that first innings," Hildreth added. "He's looking great, and I think he'll go into the Test series full of confidence knowing he's already got runs against this attack.

"Ravi is a strong character and he'll come back well. He'll bounce back, and I'm sure he'll go away and score lots of runs for Essex."

Fernando said: "It's a great win for us, because we need some momentum going into the Test match, and all the guys are now really confident after this performance.

"We have won both our warm-up matches, so the confidence is really good - especially after winning this match in these conditions.

"I'm pretty sure we can do something special. It would be a great feeling to win a series in England."

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