England captain Eoin Morgan described the abandonment of the first one-day international against Sri Lanka as “frustrating” after rain again interrupted their winter tour plans.
The tourists had already lost one of their two warm-up matches to rain in Colombo last week – the other finishing early due to bad light – and the elements had the final say in Dambulla, halting proceedings with England 92-2 off 15 overs.
Despite the best efforts of the ground staff to cover the ground before the deluge arrived, areas of the outfield were deemed unplayable after a delay of just under five hours.
“Conditions aren’t great,” Morgan admitted on Sky Sports Cricket. “The umpires played it really well and gave it plenty of time to get the covers on but when they were taking the water away and the covers off there were about three or four really muddy patches.
“In that situation as much as we do want to play and as much as the umpires do, player safety is paramount and they made the right decision.”
The sides will contest the second game of the five-match series in Dambulla on Saturday and Morgan downplayed the chances of getting a result in Sri Lanka’s monsoon season.
“It has been very frustrating (with the weather) and I think it is going to be that type of series,” he reflected. “There was no rain forecast today, which is devastating really.
“We were keen to get into the series and get going and play but hopefully we’ll have a bit of luck along the way with the weather. Hopefully we’ll get a full game on Saturday but if not come back on Sunday and play.”
Warwickshire fast bowler Olly Stone was awarded his first cap before the toss but could only look on as the rain washed away his debut and Morgan could not say definitively if the 25-year-old would get another chance at the weekend.
On Stone playing the next match, he said: “It depends; they have another wicket prepared here. If we play on the same wicket we might have to look at our team and likewise if we play on a fresh wicket we might look to play three out-and-out seamers.
“It’s unfortunate for Olly. I actually started my one-day international career in the same mode, made my debut, game got called off and then I played in the next match. He’s itching to get out there, he’s very excited about putting the shirt on but that will be delayed for another day.
“He has been brilliant and has settled really well. The guys have been really welcoming and warming to him, which is a good sign of a changing room. He has impressed with the ball, especially in the warm-up game he played, he had an extra yard on the other players and coming in to fill Liam Plunkett’s boots at the moment, there is no reason he can’t do that.”
Live coverage of England’s tour of Sri Lanka is available across Sky Sports digital platforms. Find out more here. Join us for the second ODI, from 5am on Sky Sports Cricket.
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