England opening batsman Alex Hales claims that the hosts "have the momentum" after recovering from 83-5 to 171-5 on day one of the first Test against Sri Lanka at Headingley.
Hales made an unbeaten 71 and added 88 in partnership with Jonny Bairstow, who was not out on 54.
"It was a tough day, but I knew I had to dig deep," said Hales.
"The first hour in the morning will be massive in shaping this game. It's delicately balanced."
Hales, 27, scored just 136 runs in eight innings against South Africa in December and January at an average of just 17.
"In South Africa I was tentative outside off stump," Hales told BBC Test Match Special. "I've worked on leaving and playing with intent, looking to be more decisive."
He also praised Bairstow's contribution, saying: "It was fantastic from Jonny to counter-attack in that manner. It was just good, strong cricket shots."
Sri Lanka debutant Dasun Shanaka, who took 3-30, insisted that the tourists are "still in a good position".
"If we get early wickets in the morning, we can keep them to a low total," the 24-year-old told TMS.
"When the captain gave me the ball, I was nervous. In two or three balls, I got the rhythm. It's a great honour to get the wickets of Alastair Cook and Joe Root."