Joe Root hit a great 186 but his dismissal from the final ball of the third day left Sri Lanka a slight advantage test in Galle

in the second

Root, who scored 228 points in the first test, pulled his team to 339-9 before being excellently run out on the short leg by Oshada Fernando

The English captain helped his team recover from 132-4 and finished 42 runs behind Sri Lanka

He sacked Dom Bess and Mark Wood in the last half hour when Sri Lanka ended strongly on a day otherwise dominated by Root

The English skipper sat with Jos Buttler, who made 55, on 97 and shared a decisive score of 81 with Bess for the seventh wicket

Roots punch – one of the best of his career – made him the first English test player since David Gower in 1985 to follow a double hundred with a score of over 150

It prevented England from conceding a significant first innings deficit, but with his dismissal, Sri Lanka was still able to take a useful lead in their second innings

Root had to pull himself off the field after his release. He had four balls too little to hit all day

The 30-year-old cut a Dilruwan Perera ball off his pads, but it was brilliantly parried by Fernando, who then threw the stumps up close, with Root falling short with a tired dive

Thirty minutes earlier, Root struck calmly and Bess was doing well for his 32. England appeared ready to be in close proximity to Sri Lanka with four gates still intact

Embuldeniya had caught Bess slipping with a spinning ball, and Wood played a hasty slog sweep to show the ball to the same outfield

Jack Leach and James Anderson are now faced with the task of bringing England as close as possible to Sri Lanka’s 381

Any lead on a field of play that begins to spin for the spinners could be critical

If it hadn’t been for Root, England would have had even more problems. He scored 415 in both tests, almost half of 836 in England

The Yorkshire batsman was born on ’67 resumed and started when he finished the second day He struck positively, but apparently without risk

The rest of the English lineup are struggling to deal with Embuldeniya, with Bairstow and Lawrence being its first two victims on the third day

Bairstow was caught 28 times from an inside edge over the pad on the gutter, and Lawrence hit one who slipped for three after already surviving a missed stumping opportunity

In contrast, Root moved serenely about his century in 139 balls before slowing down in the company of Buttler. Buttler fought fluently until he pressed a floor onto his boot and into the hands of a short leg

Root returned to his more expansive shots as his partnership with Bess grew, hitting two switch hit sweeps for four, reminiscent of his former teammate Kevin Pietersen

It was not until Root was on 172 before he presented a serious chance, an edge that fell off to the left of the first slip, again from Embuldeniya bowling

He played mostly on the side of the leg, showing that he is a skilled spin player, a key trait in England going to India for a four-test streak after that game

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Joe Root

World News – GB – Root scores an excellent 186 for England in Galle