Sri Lanka's six-wicket series-clinching win over England was overshadowed by the controversial run-out of Jos Buttler by Sachithra Senanayake at Edgbaston.
Buttler, who had already been warned by the Sri Lankan mystery spinner – whose bowling action has been reported to the ICC – was backing up at the non-strikers end when Senanayake ran out the Lancashire wicket-keeper.
Captain Angelo Mathews decided to uphold the appeal which saw Buttler (30) dismissed as England limped to 219 all out with Alastair Cook top scoring with 56.
In reply, two wickets for James Tredwell and one for James Anderson had Sri Lanka struggling on 62 for 3 but Mahela Jayawardene (53) and Lahiru Thirimanne (60 not out) put on 98 for the fourth wicket before Mathews' unbeaten 42 saw the tourists home to a 3-2 series win with 10 balls to spare.
But all the discussion post-match was over the running out of Buttler which although within the rules of the game, called into question Sri Lanka's interpretation of the spirit of cricket.
"I think you're going to ask Angelo why he did it, I was disappointed with it," Cook said. "You don't know in the spur of the moment what you would do but you hope you wouldn't do it.
"There were some good things about the series and some progress made - Chris Jordan and Harry Gurney - but still plenty of areas to work on with 20 games until the World Cup."
Cook and Mathews engaged in a forceful exchange following the game, with emotions still running high following the dismissal but the Sri Lanka captain remained committed to his decision.
"Buttler was taking unfair starts so we gave him two warnings and after that I didn't know what to do to stop him from doing it," the 27 year old said. "It's within the rules and in the spirit of cricket we gave him chances in this game and the last game."
England and Sri Lanka renew their rivalry in the two-match Test series starting on 12 June at Lord's.