England's Moeen Ali (centre) celebrates the dismissal of Sri Lanka's Niroshan Dickwella with team mates during the fourth day of the first test cricket match in Galle, Sri Lanka. Image Credit: AP

Galle, Sri Lanka: Spinners Moeen Ali and Jack Leach combined to destroy Sri Lanka and bowl England to a comprehensive 211-run victory inside four days in the first test on Friday.

With no realistic chance of winning after conceding a 139-run first innings lead to England, Sri Lanka tried in vain to force Rangana Herath's farewell test into its final day.

Yet while Angelo Mathews made his second fifty of the match and Kusal Mendis contributed 45, the rest of their batting order failed to offer substantial resistance and they collapsed for 250.

Moeen claimed 4-71 as he and fellow spinners Jack Leach and Adil Rashid shared eight of the 10 Sri Lankan wickets.

Playing his 93rd and last test, Herath was the last man out, diving into his crease in a failed effort to avoid being run out.

Sri Lanka's Angelo Mathews plays a shot during the fourth day of the opening Test against England at the Galle. Image Credit: AFP

Beginning day four on 15-0, Sri Lanka needed a solid start to prolong their battle and overnight batsmen Dimuth Karunaratne and Kaushal Silva saw through the first hour without any damage as they put on 51 runs for the opening stand.

Karunaratne enjoyed a slice of luck on 16 when he edged Moeen, but Stokes grassed an easy catch at slip.

Stokes was later subjected to similar agony as he watched James Anderson drop Mathews off his bowling.

Leach eventually made the breakthrough when Silva could not connect with a sweep shot and was dismissed leg before wicket for 30.

He was soon joined in the dressing room by Karunaratne (26), who charged down the pitch against Moeen and drove it straight back to the off-spinner, gifting him his 150th test wicket.

Kusal Mendis added 46 runs with Mathews for the fourth wicket, but he too could not convert a good start into a big innings and fell for 45.

Leach bowled Dinesh Chandimal for one, the Sri Lanka captain struggling to move because of a hamstring injury, but Moeen struck the biggest blow when he dismissed Mathews for 53, effectively ending Sri Lankan resistance.

The second match of the three-test series is in Kandy, starting on Novovember 14, before the final contest in Colombo from November 23.

Scoreboard

England 1st innings

Rory Burns c Niroshan Dickwella b Suranga Lakmal 9

Keaton Jennings b Dilruwan Perera 46

Moeen Ali b Suranga Lakmal 0

Joe Root b Rangana Herath 35

Ben Stokes b Dilruwan Perera 7

Jos Buttler c Niroshan Dickwella b Dilruwan Perera 38

Ben Foakes c Dhananjaya de Silva b Suranga Lakmal 107

Sam Curran c Dinesh Chandimal b Akila Dananjaya 48

Adil Rashid c Dhananjaya de Silva b Dilruwan Perera 35

Jack Leach c Dhananjaya de Silva b Dilruwan Perera 15

James Anderson Not Out 0

Extras 1b 1lb 0nb 0pen 0w 2

Total: 342 all out (97.0 overs)

Fall of Wickets: 1-10 Burns, 2-10 Ali, 3-72 Root, 4-98 Jennings, 5-103 Stokes, 6-164 Buttler, 7-252 Curran, 8-306 Rashid, 9-330 Leach, 10-342 Foakes

Bowling Ov Md Rn Wk Econ Ex

Suranga Lakmal 18 5 73 3 4.06

Dilruwan Perera 31 6 75 5 2.42

Akila Dananjaya 20 2 96 1 4.80

Rangana Herath 25 4 78 1 3.12

Dhananjaya de Silva 3 0 18 0 6.00

Sri Lanka 1st innings

Dimuth Karunaratne c Ben Foakes b James Anderson 4

Kaushal Silva lbw Sam Curran 1

Dhananjaya de Silva b Moeen Ali 14

Kusal Mendis c Ben Stokes b Jack Leach 19

Angelo Mathews c Keaton Jennings b Moeen Ali 52

Dinesh Chandimal st Ben Foakes b Adil Rashid 33

Niroshan Dickwella c Jos Buttler b Moeen Ali 28

Dilruwan Perera c Jos Buttler b Jack Leach 21

Akila Dananjaya c Ben Foakes b Moeen Ali 0

Suranga Lakmal c James Anderson b Adil Rashid 15

Rangana Herath Not Out 14

Extras 0b 2lb 0nb 0pen 0w 2

Total: 203 all out (68.0 overs)

Fall of Wickets: 1-4 Karunaratne, 2-10 Silva, 3-34 Mendis, 4-40 de Silva, 5-115 Chandimal, 6-136 Mathews, 7-171 Dickwella, 8-173 Perera, 9-175 Perera, 10-203 Lakmal

Bowling Ov Md Rn Wk Econ Ex

James Anderson 10 0 26 1 2.60

Sam Curran 6 1 16 1 2.67

Jack Leach 18 2 41 2 2.28

Moeen Ali 21 4 66 4 3.14

Adil Rashid 9 1 30 2 3.33

Ben Stokes 4 0 22 0 5.50

England 2nd innings

Rory Burns Run Out Dimuth Karunaratne 23

Keaton Jennings Not Out 146

Moeen Ali c Rangana Herath b Dilruwan Perera 3

Joe Root c Niroshan Dickwella b Rangana Herath 3

Ben Stokes b Dilruwan Perera 62

Jos Buttler c Kaushal Silva b Rangana Herath 35

Ben Foakes c Kusal Mendis b Akila Dananjaya 37

Extras 4b 7lb 2nb 0pen 0w 13

Total: 322 decl (93.0 overs)

Fall of Wickets: 1-60 Burns, 2-67 Ali, 3-74 Root, 4-181 Stokes, 5-258 Buttler, 6-319 Foakes.

Did Not Bat: Curran, Rashid, Leach, Anderson

Bowling Ov Md Rn Wk Econ Ex

Dilruwan Perera 30 3 94 2 3.13

Suranga Lakmal 9 2 30 0 3.33 2nb

Rangana Herath 23 1 59 2 2.57

Akila Dananjaya 18.5 2 87 1 4.62

Dhananjaya de Silva 12.1 2 41 0 3.37

Sri Lanka 2nd innings

Dimuth Karunaratne c&b Moeen Ali 26

Kaushal Silva lbw Jack Leach 30

Dhananjaya de Silva c Joe Root b Ben Stokes 21

Kusal Mendis c Moeen Ali b Jack Leach 45

Angelo Mathews c Jos Buttler b Moeen Ali 53

Dinesh Chandimal b Jack Leach 1

Niroshan Dickwella c Ben Stokes b Moeen Ali 16

Dilruwan Perera c Ben Stokes b Adil Rashid 30

Akila Dananjaya c Ben Stokes b Moeen Ali 8

Suranga Lakmal Not Out 14

Rangana Herath Run Out Ben Stokes 5

Extras 0b 1lb 0nb 0pen 0w 1

Total: 250 all out ((85.1 overs)

Fall of Wickets: 1-51 Silva, 2-59 Karunaratne, 3-98 de Silva, 4-144 Mendis, 5-154 Chandimal, 6-190 Dickwella, 7-197 Mathews, 8-229 Perera, 9-239 Perera, 10-250 Herath

Bowling Ov Md Rn Wk Econ

Sam Curran 5 1 15 0 3.00

James Anderson 12 2 27 0 2.67

Moeen Ali 20 2 71 4 3.14

Adil Rashid 18.1 0 59 1 3.25

Jack Leach 21 1 60 3 2.86

Ben Stokes 8 2 16 1 2.00

Joe Root 1 0 1 0 1.00

Umpires: Christopher Gaffaney, Marais Erasmus

Video: Sundaram Ravi

Match Referee: Andrew Pycroft