England captain Joe Root notched up another special milestone as he scored a second century in as many innings to keep England afloat on day three of the second and final Test against Sri Lanka in Galle. Root overtook former England skipper Kevin Pietersen to become the top run-getter for England on Sunday. Pietersen had scored a respectable 8,181 Test runs in his career. Root followed up his 228 in the first match with the 19th Test century, the first time he has reached three figures in consecutive tests in his career.
Having walked in to bat with England at seven runs for two wickets, Root had raced to 67 on day two as England reached 98 for two at stumps on Saturday. But on day three, Root was more cautious with the wicket offering plenty of turn and bounce for the Sri Lankan bowlers.
Joe Root has now gone past Kevin Pietersen to become England’s fifth-highest run-getter in Tests 🙌
Can you name the top four? 👀 pic.twitter.com/Df9XkBn2Un
— ICC (@ICC) January 24, 2021
Root tallied a double hundred in the first test that England won by seven wickets. England batsmen have struggled against Sri Lankas spin but Root has remained untroubled.
Roots plans against spin appeared simple: for full deliveries, defend on the back foot and play the sweep for ones that were short.
Sri Lanka placed three fielders in the boundary to cut off the sweep shot, but Root kept finding gaps.
He shared a 97-run stand for the fifth wicket with Jos Buttler, who brought up his 18th test half-century after cutting Dilruwan Perera for four.
He was dismissed for 55 as Sri Lanka reviewed a decision to give debutant Ramesh Mendis his maiden test wicket.
Buttler had attempted a reverse sweep but ended up edging the ball to his boot and the short leg fielder Oshada Fernando snapped up the catch.
Sam Curran survived a leg before shout off Perera and later in the same over deposited one for six over mid-wicket.
In the last over before tea, Lasith Embuldeniya, who was given the new ball from the City End had Curran caught at slip to complete a five-wicket haul, his third in tests.