Leeds (England): Mahela Jayawardene`s career-best 144 provided the platform for Sri Lanka`s 69-run victory against England in the second one-day international at Headingley here on Friday.
Sri Lanka`s win, which levelled the five-match series at 1-1, looked likely after Jayawardene`s innings, his highest score in 343 ODIs, surpassing his 128 against India at Sharjah in 2000, powered the tourists to 309 for five.
That meant England had to top their previous winning score batting second in an ODI of 306 for five against Pakistan in Karachi in 2000 if they were to take a 2-0 lead against the World Cup finalists.
But they struggled to maintain the required run-rate and were bowled out for 240 with 25 balls to spare.
Both seamer Suranga Lakmal and off-spinner Suraj Randiv took three for 43.
England captain Alastair Cook, who won the toss and fielded after leading his side to a 110-run win in the rain-affected opener at The Oval on Tuesday, and fellow opener Craig Kieswetter made a bright start to the chase.
Cook, belying suggestions he is a slow scorer, made 48 off 53 balls including five boundaries.
But his promising innings ended when a lofted cover-drive against Randiv went straight to Angelo Mathews.
Kevin Pietersen swept Randiv for six but on 13 his lofted drive off leg-spinner Jeevan Mendis was well-caught by Lasith Malinga, running round from long-on.
And when Jonathan Trott was bowled for a pedestrian 39 off 54 balls by Lakmal`s superb inswinging yorker, England were faltering at 144 for four.
Eoin Morgan, dropped on 25 off a difficult caught and bowled chance by Randiv, tried to revive the innings by hoisting Mendis for two huge sixes off successive deliveries.
The former Ireland international made an excellent fifty off 37 balls, including two sixes and three fours.
But on 52 he was brilliantly stumped by Kumar Sangakkara, off a ball from Randiv the wicketkeeper took shoulder high.
England`s fading chance of victory disappeared with the left-hander, his exit sparking a slump that saw three wickets lost for five runs.
Even the in-form Ian Bell found life tough, his 35 taking 48 balls before he holed out off Nuwan Kulasekara.
Earlier, a couple of reckless run-outs reduced Sri Lanka to 45 for two in the 10th over.
But a record partnership of 159 between Jayawardene, dropped on seven, and Sangakkara, who made 69, turned the tide.
Off-spinner Graeme Swann -- who dropped Jayawardene -- led England`s attack with two wickets, both stumpings completed by Kieswetter.
But the seamers suffered with both Stuart Broad and Bresnan conceding 70 runs each.
Jayawardene`s single off medium-pacer Bresnan saw him to his 15th ODI hundred and fifth against England in 118 balls with seven boundaries.
Former captains Jayawardene and Sangakkara topped their previous Sri Lankan third-wicket ODI record stand against England of 140 set at Chester-le-Street in 2006.
However, they were separated when Sangakkara was beaten by a sharply turning delivery from Swann and stumped by Kieswetter.
Jayawardene`s superb innings ended when, deceived by Swann, he was also stumped having faced just 150 balls with 14 boundaries.
The series continues at Lord`s on Sunday.
First Published: Saturday, July 02, 2011, 00:10