Pictures: AP Photo/Eranga Jayawardena

BEN Foakes went on to complete a glorious century on his England Test debut.

The Colchester-born former Frinton star resumed on 87 not out on day two of the second Test in Sri Lanka.

And he wasted little time in bringing up three figures, reaching the stunning milestone shortly before 5am this morning and being the last wicket to fall as England reached 342.

He was given a huge ovation around the stadium as he reached his century by punching a shot straight for four.

Foakes, who also played club cricket for Colchester and East Essex and Clacton, has become the second wicketkeeper to score a hundred on his England debut, the 22nd England player to score 100 against Sri Lanka and the 167th England player to score 100 in an England shirt.

BBC cricket correspondent Jonathan Agnew was full of praise for the former Tendring Technology College student, speaking on Test Match Special.

He said: "It was an intelligent and well-paced Test innings from Ben Foakes.

"He looks more capable than a number seven.

"He followed the essential principles - playing straight with good foot movements.

"Scoring at a run every two balls is about right for playing in these conditions.

"He looked calm and assured and it was a hugely impressive debut innings."

To put the cherry on the cake, Foakes, 25, then took a catch from only the second ball of the Sri Lanka innings as Dimuth Karunaratne edged a delivery from Jimmy Anderson.