Aussie-born Billy to lead England charge

Billy Vunipola will have plenty of local support as he tries to get England on the front foot in pursuit of a series clean sweep against the Wallabies.

The 23-year-old back-rower was born in Sydney, but moved to Britain when he was six years old and doesn’t have strong memories of his early time in Australia.

He is however a perennial visitor to Sydney where some of his relatives still live.

“One of my grandmothers lives here and my mum’s family is based here and I come here every year on my way to Tonga, so it’s quite a familiar place for me,” Vunipola said.

After England were forced to defend for most of last week’s second Test, Vunipola wants to lead a more assertive effort at Allianz Stadium on Saturday night.

“It would be nice if we got a few phases of attack and try and impose ourselves on them in a different way,” Vunipola said.

“This week we definitely want to get more front-foot ball and I guess that comes down to people like me.”

He stressed England had no option but to bring the same attitude as they did for the first two Tests if they wanted to fulfil their pre-series goal of a clean sweep.

“We can’t let up now because we’ve made promises and you can’t break them,” Vunipola said.

He hasn’t been on a losing side in three Tests against Australia, but said it had been far from an easy task in the forwards battle during the first two Tests.

“It’s been a tough old scrap,” he said.

Trying to reach the target of becoming the world’s best No.8 set by England coach Eddie Jones, Vunipola said he still had up to six players ahead of him, including Australia’s David Pocock.

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