Still a long way to go, says Pothas

Still a long way to go, says Pothas

Sri Lanka may be on top in the opening Test, having reduced India to 74 for five in less than three hours of play that has been possible over the first two days but Nic Pothas, Sri Lanka's interim coach, said there is still a long way to go in this match.

"We can't control the conditions," said Pothas at the media briefing. "You have got to play your best cricket and strategise and plan according to that. We are making a lot of speculations on day two. The game is not that old and we have only finished two days of play. Where we stand at the moment we are very happy but we are not getting too comfortable as it is a high-quality Indian team. So far we are pleased how things have gone for us. It will be very challenging batting conditions. You have got to still go out there and do the job," he offered.

While admitting that the conditions did help the Lankan pace attack, he highlighted the fact that this combination was injured when India visited the island nation. "The attack is different as these guys were mostly injured when we played India at home. Secondly, these are seam bowler-friendly conditions. Of course, you can attribute the success to the conditions as that's the fact of the matter. As I said, the conditions are provided and you need to play in them."

Pothas had a special praise for Suranga Lakmal, who claimed three wickets on the opening day to put Lanka in driver's seat.

"He is a very intelligent bowler," said Pothas. "He does a lot of research, knows how to control his workload. He is very astute and knows when he is prepared. That's the mark of any international bowler. He has improved immeasurably. If you are playing international cricket, you have to always improve as others are improving. Otherwise, you are not going to make any progress," he emphasised.

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