Joe Root
Joe Root (AFP Photo)

England captain Joe Root won the toss for the third time in a row and elected to bat in the third and final Test against Sri Lanka in Colombo on Friday.

The visitors, looking to achieve a 3-0 whitewash, made two changes to the side for the game at the Singhalese Cricket Club where the wicket is expected to take substantial turn.

They rested fast bowler James Anderson to give Stuart Broad his first Test of the series, while batsman Jonny Bairstow replaces the injured Sam Curran.

Bairstow was expected to bat at number three, where England have had trouble finding a consistent batsman.

Sri Lanka also made two changes, bringing in left-arm wrist spinner Lakshan Sandakan to replace Akila Dananjaya who is in Brisbane having his bowling action biomechanically tested.

Under-performing opener Kaushal Silva has been left out in favour of Danushka Gunathilaka.

Sri Lanka: Suranga Lakmal (capt), Dimuth Karunaratne, Danushka Gunathilaka, Dhananjaya de Silva, Kusal Mendis, Angelo Mathews, Roshen Silva, Niroshan Dickwella, Dilruwan Perera, Lakshan Sandakan, Malinda Pushpakumara

England: Joe Root (capt), Rory Burns, Keaton Jennings, Jonny Bairstow, Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler, Moeen Ali, Ben Foakes, Adil Rashid, Stuart Broad, Jack Leach

Umpires: S. Ravi (IND), Chris Gaffaney (NZL)

Third Umpire: Marais Erasmus (RSA)

Match-referee: Andy Pycroft (ZIM)