Jos Buttler
Jos Buttler struck 55 to see England home alongside Joe Root Getty Images

England reignited their World Cup preparations as Jos Buttler and Joe Root's unbeaten 84-run partnership inspired the tourists to a five-wicket win over Sri Lanka in Hambantota.

Root (48 not out) and Buttler (55 not out) helped chase a Duckworth Lewis adjusted total of 236 to win after the wickets of Moeen Ali and Alex Hales had England teetering.

Victory sees Sir Lanka lead the seven-match series 2-1 with four games remaining.

With the match reduced to 35 overs per side after early rain, the hosts had earlier put on 242 for 8 with Kumar Sangakkara making 63 and Lahiru Thirimanne finishing on 62 not out.

Chris Woakes took 3-21 and Chris Jordan 2-46 as England allowed Sri Lanka to open their shoulders during the closing overs but an impressive start to their chase exposed the pace in the flat surface.

Despite the dismissal of Alastair Cook (34) and Moeen Ali (58) after a mix-up running between the wickets with Alex Hales, England stormed to 144 for 2 with 13 overs remaining.

However, the loss of Hales (27) sparked a customary mid-innings collapse from the tourists with Ravi Bopara (6) and Eoin Morgan (1) dismissed cheaply as Angelo Mathews took two wickets to haul Sri Lanka back into the contest as three wickets fell for eight runs in the space of eight balls.

But the momentum of the match swung as Root was handed a reprieve despite hitting straight to extra cover off Dhammika Prasad, after replays indicated the bowler overstepped in his run up.

Root and Buttler then piled on the pain with five fours between them in the next nine balls to see England home and keep them in touch in the marathon one-day series in the sub-continent.