GALLE (AFP) - Debutant Ben Foakes hit a defiant and unbeaten 87, guiding England to safety -- after Sri Lanka claimed cheap early wickets -- on 321 for eight on the cease of the primary day of the first take a look at.

The Surrey wicket-keeper batsman, who is aware of this may just be a one-off risk as Jonny Bairstow regains fitness, came in with England precariously positioned on 103 for 5 on a Galle pitch infamous for low ratings.

Foakes built crucial partnerships inclusive of an 88-run seventh wicket stand with Sam Curran, who made forty eight, to defy Sri Lanka s bowlers.

England elected to bat first in what was Sri Lankan spin legend Rangana Herath s farewell suit.

The right-handed Foakes steadied the innings achieving his half century early in the very last session because the tourists lost simply three wickets after lunch.

Foakes placed on sixty one for the sixth wicket with Jos Buttler, who became in the end stuck behind off Dilruwan Perera for 38.

Left-hander Curran attacked the bowling, hitting one 4 and 3 sixes earlier than falling two quick of his fifty to spinner Akila Dananjaya.

Adil Rashid made a useful 35 in a stand of 54 with Foakes that accelerated the frustration for Sri Lanka s bowlers before he have become Perera s fourth victim of the day.

Jack Leach, batting on 14, then survived a few traumatic moments inside the very last overs to offer Foakes a threat to finish a momentous debut ton on day two.

Sri Lanka s veteran spinner Rangana Herath, claimed his 100th check scalp at Galle after sending again England skipper Joe Root inside the opening session.

only two other bowlers have accomplished a hundred take a look at wickets on one floor -- Herath s mythical compatriot Muttiah Muralitharan who completed it at Galle, Kandy and SSC Colombo, and England paceman James Anderson at Lord s.

Herath notched up the milestone when Root came down the wicket and missed after a breezy 35.

Root had additionally steadied England once they stumbled to 10 for two after debutant opener Rory Burns changed into caught at the back of off Surange Lakmal for nine and Moeen Ali became bowled next ball.

Surrey left-hander Burns had been given the tough mission of changing stalwart Alastair cook dinner following his retirement in September.

After Root s dismissal, Perera skittled Keaton Jennings four brief of his 50 before bowling Ben Stokes round his legs for seven as he tried to sweep.