Foakes lifts England to 199-6 at tea in S. Lanka Test
Galle, Nov 6 (AFP) Debutant wicketkeeper-batsman Ben Foakes led England's revival after the tourists lost half their side for 103 on day one of the first Test against Sri Lanka on Tuesday.
Foakes, batting on 49, put on a crucial 61-run sixth wicket stand with Jos Buttler, who made 38, to resist a persistent Sri Lankan spin attack in Galle. England were 199 for six at tea with Sam Curran, on 14, batting alongside Foakes. The pair have put on an unbeaten 35-run partnership.
Off-spinner Dilruwan Perera has taken three wickets so far, while retiring Rangana Herath claimed his 100th Test scalp at Galle after sending back England skipper Joe Root in the opening session.
Only two other bowlers have achieved 100 Test wickets at the same ground -- Herath's compatriot Muttiah Muralitharan who achieved it at Galle, Kandy and SSC Colombo, and England paceman James Anderson at Lord's. Herath notched up the milestone when Root came down the wicket and missed after a breezy 35.
Root had steadied England when the visitors found themselves 10 for 2 after debutant opener Rory Burns was caught behind off Surange Lakmal for nine and Moeen Ali was bowled next ball.
Surrey left-hander Burns had been given the tough task of replacing stalwart Alastair Cook following his retirement in September.
After Root's dismissal, Perera skittled Keaton Jennings four short of his 50 before bowling Ben Stokes around his legs for seven as he attempted to sweep. Foakes then held the fort in the second session, during which England lost only the wicket of Buttler, who was caught behind after his gritty 72-ball stay at the crease