Wellington, New Zealand: A century by Joe Root lifted England to 309 for six in its World Cup Pool A match against Sri Lanka, with some big hitting near the end helping to make amends for the slow progress during the middle stages of the innings.
Root's 121 came off 108 balls and included 14 fours and two sixes. As he began hitting out late in the innings, he improvised with shots like the reverse sweep, which he managed to collect one six from before getting out to another attempt, lbw to Rangana Herath (1-35).
England got off to a flying start in Wellington on Sunday thanks to some good early hitting by Ian Bell (49) lifting it to 45 off six overs.
But when Sri Lanka brought on its slower bowlers, England lost momentum, managing to score just 83 runs off the 20 overs that followed the first 10.
After Moeen Ali (15) and Gary Ballance (6) fell, England appeared eager to not suffer another calamitous batting collapse as it had in its last matchup in Wellington, when it managed just 123 against New Zealand.
However, England made up for lost time in the last 15 overs. In the final 10, it scored at a clip of over 10 per over to take the team over 300 and post a challenging total. Buttler played a nice cameo, scoring an unbeaten 39 off 19 balls.
The success that Sri Lanka's slower bowlers enjoyed, at least before the final onslaught, may make England wonder if it made the right decision by leaving out spinner James Tredwell.