Even at Tea, the match seemed to be heading towards a nail-biter. Sri Lanka had earlier simply gifted their wickets in the second innings, losing all 10 batsmen for just 126, the top-scorer being their top wicket-taker Lasith Embuldeniya, with his 42-ball 40. With a target of 164 to chase at Galle, England wobbled. Zak Crawley got squared up, Jonny Bairstow was trapped in front of leg, Joe Root got dismissed on the tour for the first time off a sweep shot, and Embuldeniya picked his 10th in the second Test by dismissed Daniel Lawrence with a floater around the middle. England went four down in 25 overs for 89 runs and just went it seemed Sri Lanka had found themselves back in the game, a resilient pair of Jos Buttler and Dom Sibley countered the spinners with astute caution to guide the visitors to a six-wicket win and a 2-0 series win at Galle.
2011/12 was the tour when England's streak of Test wins in Sri Lanka had begun. They won the second Test, ending the series on a draw, before returning in 2018 to clean sweep the Islanders 3-0 and then emulating the feat again in this tour, taking their tally of consecutive wins to six. England have now won four Tests series in Sri Lanka - 1982, 2001, 2018, and 2021 - comprising nine wins, four draws, and five defeats in 20 matches.
6 consecutive wins in Sri Lanka make England the first visiting team to achieve this feat. India have won their last five straight matches in Sri Lanka, starting August 2015 and completing a clean sweep in 2017.
50 is now England's win percentage in Sri Lanka which is the most by any visiting team followed by Australia's 30% (6 wins in 16 Tests). With nine wins, they have equalled India's tally for most matches won by a visiting team in Sri Lanka.
Visting teams in England:
1914 was the last time England won five consecutive away Tests. With the 2-0 win, they completed their biggest winning streak away from home in the last 107 years, the three other wins happening in South Africa in January last year. England had won seven matches on the trot between 1911 and 1914, defeating Australia four times and South Africa thrice.
5 times England have now won a Test in Asia after losing the toss and batting second. It happened in both the Tests this series, twice during the 2012 series in India, which they had won, and the in Sri Lanka in the same year, in Colombo. Among non-Asian teams, England stand well in front followed by New Zealand who have achieved it twice. South Africa and Australia are the only other teams. England are also the only non-Asian team to win in Sri Lanka in the fourth innings. And they have achieved it six times. No other team has achieved this feat even once.
100 percent record for Root the captain, on Asian soil. The next best win percentage belongs to Tony Grieg - 60 per cent with three wins in five Tests. The win also implies that England are now on a 10-match winning streak under Root, who now has 25 Test wins as captain, surpassing Alastair Cook. Only Micheal Vaughan has more for England with 26 wins.