Dambulla: Mahela Jayawardene hit a solid half-century to help Sri Lanka post a competitive 269 for 7 against England in the opening one-day international here on Monday.
The Sri Lankan captain made 66 just when England looked like restricting the hosts to a modest total with their tight bowling on a slow pitch in a day-night match. He struck four boundaries in his 74-ball knock.
Sri Lanka made an impressive start after winning the toss when veteran Sanath Jayasuriya (41) and Upul Tharanga (40) added 71 for the opening wicket but they lost momentum in the middle overs.
Seamers Paul Collingwood, Ryan Sidebottom and Stuart Broad, who was smashed for six sixes in an over by India's Yuvraj Singh in a recent Twenty20 match in South Africa, grabbed two wickets apiece.
Off-spinner Graeme Swann took one wicket in his first one-dayer in seven years.
Jayawardene bolstered the innings with a timely knock, putting on 71 for the third wicket with left-handed Kumar Sangakkara (38) and 59 for the next with Chamara Silva (33).
The Sri Lankan captain fell in the 44th over, but not before putting his team on course for a challenging total. The last seven overs yielded 44 runs, thanks to Farveez Maharoof's 12-ball 22.
The foundation was laid by Jayasuriya, who went for big shots after taking some time to settle down, swinging paceman James Anderson for the match's first six and then pulling for a four in the same over.
But he fell just when he looked like dominating the attack, caught by Ravi Bopara at deep mid-wicket off left-arm seamer Sidebottom only one ball after being dropped by Anderson at mid-on.
Sri Lanka found it diffiult to step up the run-rate when Tharanga was caught by Collingwood at point off Broad after hitting just two fours in his 63-ball knock.
Jayawardene and Sangakkara steadied the innings, relying more on singles and twos during their partnership. Sangakkara was stumped by debutant wicket-keeper Phil Mustard off Swann.
Sri Lanka 269 for 7 in 50 overs (Jayawardene 66, Jayasuriya 41, Tharanga 40, Sangakkara 38, Chamara Silva 33; Collingwood 2 for 44, Stuart Broad 2 for 44, Sidebottom 2 for 54) Vs England.