Sri Lanka v England, 2nd Test, Colombo, 3rd day April 5, 2012

Hard work ahead - Ford

Sri Lanka coach Graham Ford said they have a lot of hard work to do in the next two days of the second test after England built a first innings lead of 185 and put the pressure back on the home team.

"Pressure's pretty crucial in the game of cricket and England eased the pressure by the solid start they had. After that they ended up putting pressure on us," Ford said. "The next two days we've got a lot of hard work to do. We have to get out and bat session for session."

Assessing the day's play Ford said he was pleased the way Sri Lanka came back in the final session to capture six England wickets "It was a tough day but pleasing the way the lads fought back in the last session. I thought they stuck to it pretty well.

"If you look at it realistically Kevin Pietersen's knock was the difference, he was absolutely superb. We had one little half chance before lunch when he got an inside edge to one of Dilshan's deliveries. Had it gone to hand we might not have been as far behind in the game as we are right now."

Ford said that he was pleased the way the two fast bowlers Dhammika Prasad and Suranga Lakmal bowled on the surface. "There wasn't a lot in it for the pace bowlers and they stuck to their task and to their game plans and executed them fairly well. I am reasonably pleased with the work they did.

"Yesterday afternoon the pitch was probably at its best to bat on. I thought it would be good to bat on right from the start but there was a bit on it on day one and yesterday it looked to have died a bit.

"There are a few things going on, the bounce is a little bit uneven from time to time but it does look as if you take your time and get yourself in and get used to the pace of your wicket you can occupy the crease and bat for long periods. That's something we are going to hold onto and try and get it right."

Ford expected England to come back hard at them after losing the first test at Galle. "I've got a huge respect for England, with them being the No. 1 Test nation. You know a side with that sort of record and reputation is going to put in a very much improved performance obviously being disappointed with the first Test match," Ford said. "Anytime you walk on the field against the current England side you are up for a heck of a tough match. There's no case of anybody thinking that it would be any different."