The tourists, trailing 1-0 in the series, left out off-spinner Graeme Swann from the 12 announced on Monday and went in with just one specialist slow bowler in Monty Panesar.
Sri Lanka awarded a Test cap to 26-year-old fast bowler Chanaka Welegedara and recalled all-rounder Tillekeratne Dilshan.
The match, the first at this stadium after it was destroyed by the Asian tsunami in December 2004, was due to start at 12 noon (0630 GMT). A wet outfield prevented any play in the morning session.
England: Michael Vaughan (capt), Alastair Cook, Ian Bell, Kevin Pietersen, Paul Collingwood, Ravi Bopara, Matthew Prior (wicket-keeper), Ryan Sidebottom, Monty Panesar, Steve Harmison, Matthew Hoggard.
Sri Lanka: Mahela Jayawardene (capt), Kumar Sangakkara, Upul Tharanga, Michael Vandort, Chamara Silva, Tillekeratne Dilshan, Prasanna Jayawardene (wicket-keeper), Chaminda Vaas, Lasith Malinga, Chanaka Welegedara, Muttiah Muralitharan.
Umpires: Asad Rauf (PAK) and Daryl Harper (AUS)
TV umpire: Asoka de Silva (SRI)
Match referee: Jeff Crowe (NZL)