LONDON - Chris Jordan starred with both bat and ball as England's cricketers set off on the road to next year's World Cup with an 81-run win over Sri Lanka in a rain marred one day international at The Oval on Thursday.
The Sussex all-rounder's belligerent 38 not out off just 13 balls propelled England to a total of 6-247 in an innings reduced by rain to 39 overs.
And, on his former Surrey home ground, the Barbados-born Jordan took three wickets for 25 runs, including three for three in 12 balls.
The Sri Lankans, chasing a target of 226 in 32 overs after another downpour, never recovered and finished on 144 in 27.5 overs.
"I came in to try to score with a flurry and I'm glad it came off," man of the match Jordan told BBC Radio after England took a 1-0 lead in this five match series.
"We wanted as many runs as we could because Sri Lanka bat really deep and we were wary of that."
"Everyone played well and it was an impressive batting display.
"Those 30 runs at the end of the innings really made the difference," England captain Alastair Cook added.
Disappointed Sri Lanka captain Angelo Mathews did not hold back in criticising his men.
"A pretty poor performance by our whole team, starting off with our bowlers but the English batsmen did well.
"We need to keep our heads held high and come back strong."
England, in their first match in the format against a Test nation since Peter Moores returned as head coach, quickly reduced Sri Lanka to 2-19.
James Anderson struck fifth ball, with Sri Lanka yet to score a run, when he had Lahiru Thirimanne lbw before left arm paceman Harry Gurney had Kumar Sangakkara playing on for eight.
Sri Lanka were 2-60, in pursuit of a target of 259 in 39 overs, when rain stopped play for the second time in the match.
On resumption, Sri Lanka needed to score at nine an over and lost wickets in the face of such a stiff run rate.
Mahela Jaywardene made a typically stylish 35 before chipping off spinner James Tredwell to Eoin Morgan at short mid-wicket.
Dinesh Chandimal was caught behind off Jordan and three balls later Nuwan Kulasekara skyed the paceman to wicketkeeper Jos Buttler to leave Sri Lanka struggling at 6-108.
England captain Alastair Cook, once labelled a "donkey" in the field by predecessor Michael Atherton, then took an excellent running catch to dismiss opposing skipper Angelo Mathews.
Earlier, the hosts were in trouble at 5-152 when Sri Lanka off-spinner Sachithra Senanayake took two wickets in seven balls to remove Ballance (64) and Bopara.
But England, as Sri Lanka had done in the nine run Twenty20 win at The Oval on Tuesday, enjoyed a late flurry with the bat, striking 93 off the last seven overs.
The series continues at north-east county Durham's Chester-le-Street headquarters on Sunday.