Ballance fights for a regular role

16 January 2014 04:52:57 EST

Batsman Gary Ballance is determined to continue a solid start to his international career when England face Australia in the second one-day international.

Yorkshire left-hander Ballance top-scored with 79 as the tourists lost the first ODI by six wickets in Melbourne, before adding 56 in the midweek victory over a Prime Minister's XI in Canberra.

I've got a bit of confidence and now I need to take that into the next game.

Gary Ballance

Now Ballance, who also made his Test debut this winter, hopes to impress again when England take to the field in Brisbane on Friday trying to level the five-match one-day series.

He told reporters: "I've spent a bit of time in the middle, got a decent score in the first game and then to get another fifty was good.

"I've got a bit of confidence and now I need to take that into the next game. I feel a bit more comfortable - it helps getting a few decent scores.

"There are a lot of good players around, so I have to keep working hard and try to make that place my own."

Ballance can be backed at 5/1 to be England's top batsman on Friday, with Eoin Morgan 9/2 and Jos Buttler 9/1.

England will have to cope with the return of Ashes nemesis Mitchell Johnson for the clash at the Gabba, with the left-arm quickie having been rested for the first ODI at the MCG.

However, all-rounder Shane Watson will be absent, as he is given an extended rest which will also see him sit out the third and fourth matches of the ODI series.

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