Man-of-the-match Thisara Perera made a rapid 49 in World Twenty20 champions Sri Lanka's 183 for seven and then captured the important wicket of England captain Eoin Morgan under the floodlights in this day/night clash reported AFP.
On their way to winning this year's World Twenty20 in Bangladesh, Sri Lanka suffered a six-wicket loss to England in the group stage in March.
That match saw Alex Hales become the first England batsman to score a Twenty20 international hundred.
But in this floodlit Twenty20 his 66, albeit off 41 balls with seven fours and two sixes, was not enough to take England to victory. Dropped catches cost England dear in an innings where Sri Lanka, led by Perera, smashed 75 off the last six overs.
"I am pleased with my batting performance," Perera said at the presentation ceremony.
"It was a good batting track and we gave ourselves a good target to bowl at. It was good to get Eoin Morgan out, everyone knows he can hit every ball to the boundary so I'm really happy with that wicket."
Morgan, leading the side in the absence of the injured Stuart Broad, bemoaned his side's fielding lapses while paying tribute to Sri Lanka captain Lasith Malinga, who justified his reputation as the world's leading Twenty20 bowler with three for 28.
"It is devastating to lose -- in the first 15 overs we bowled well and fielded well but in the final five overs it fell away," said Morgan. "We have no excuses -- they were perfect fielding conditions and we have dropped three catches, that is inexcusable," the former Ireland batsman added. "Lasith Malinga is world-class, we have come up against him many times and he normally comes out on top."
England and Sri Lanka return to The Oval on Thursday for the first of five one-day internationals, with the teams also playing a two-Test series in June.