ICC World Twenty20 champions England can look forward with hope, not back with regret, after Saturday's much-needed six-wicket Super Eight victory over New Zealand.
Steven Finn's three for 16 and Luke Wright's man-of-the-match 76 headlined a comfortable but crucial success at Pallekele, which means England will return here on Monday with all still to play for in defence of their title.
"Obviously, it was a must-win game for us - and the way we won it was really good," said captain Stuart Broad. "The guys bowled fantastically well. Finny set the tone brilliantly for us...getting two key men out."
He added: "I always think if you've got a batter and bowler who have a chance of winning the man-of-the-match award, you've played well. I think we had that today."
After Sri Lanka beat West Indies, a second consecutive win for England - over the hosts here - would almost certainly secure a return trip for Broad's team to Colombo for the knockout stages.
There was a touch of relief as well as satisfaction that - despite England's defeat against the Windies two days ago - they still have a realistic chance of retaining the trophy, and have at last done themselves some justice in this tournament.
England thought they had lost an important toss, on a dry surface favouring the spinners, but knew at the interval they had done enough with the ball to have a favourite's chance.
"We were delighted with (a target of) 148 (for six)," added Broad. "We just needed one big partnership, and Wrighty and 'Morgs' [Eoin Morgan] obviously delivered that."
England's third-wicket pair put on 89 in 10 overs, effectively sealing the match.
"I thought we were pretty sensible up top; we knew we didn't have to go hell for leather," said the captain. "It was about having wickets in hand, and the way Wrighty and 'Morgs' set about it was lovely."