By Lawrence Booth for the Daily Mail
Published: 13:57 BST, 12 September 2020 | Updated: 20:52 BST, 12 September 2020
Sam Billings has promised England will come out ‘firing’ in the second one-day international against Australia as they look to protect an unbeaten record stretching back to January 2017 in India.
And the last time a team beat Eoin Morgan’s side in this country in a bilateral series of more than one game was 2015, when Australia won 3-2 in the first summer of England’s white-ball transformation.
Now, following Friday’s 19-run defeat in Manchester, they must win both on Sunday and on Wednesday against an Australian side who are hoping to welcome back Steve Smith after he hit on the head by a throw from a member of the Australian coaching staff.
Smith passed a second assessment on Saturday morning and will be monitored until the start of Sunday's game at 1pm.
Sam Billings has promised England will come out ‘firing’ in the second one-day international against Australia as they look to protect an unbeaten record
All-rounder Mitchell Marsh, who made a valuable 73 on Friday as Australia recovered from 123 for five, insisted the blow would simply steel Smith’s resolve, both in training against the tourists’ impressive battery of quicks, and out in the middle.
‘The Steve Smith I know will probably ask guys to bump the hell out of him,’ said Marsh. ‘He loves the contest. Anyone that bowls 150kph, he loves the challenge, so certainly there will be no backing down.’
Asked if Smith would relish a short-pitched barrage from England, Marsh replied: ‘Absolutely. I’m looking forward to seeing that happen.’
England’s main focus,