England can lead us, says Lions skipper

CAPTAIN Rory Hamilton-Brown says his Surrey side will aim to follow the lead of England when they open their Friends’ Provident T20 campaign tonight.

The all-rounder leads the Lions in their opening day/night encounter with Gloucestershire at The Oval.

And the former England under-19 international hopes his new side can emulate the feat of Paul Collingwood’s senior side, who lifted their first global tournament title at the World Twenty20 last month.

Specialist big-hitters such as Craig Kieswetter and Michael Lumb led England’s success in the West Indies, now Hamilton-Brown says Surrey are looking towards adopting the same strategy in a bid to repeat their 2003 success.

“We are a developing side, we are a young side, we are a side that is
looking to build something for the future,” said the skipper, the youngest in county cricket, aged 22.

“There is priority – every competition we take seriously, every training day, every playing day, every four day game, every one day game. So Twenty20 is hugely exciting, it is a chance for the guys in the squad to let themselves loose and play some exciting cricket.”

Undoubtedly, one of those players is all-rounder Andrew Symonds, who is expected to make his debut for the Lions tonight, and Hamilton-Brown expects the flamboyant Australian to make a real impact.

“We managed to get our number one priority, so to have someone like that sat in the dressing room who is one of the world’s best in this form of the game is exciting. It is great for the young blokes to learn off him,”?he added.

“With the aura he has about him it will be fantastic, he will lift people, because when you see a bloke like that walking into the dressing room it’s uplifting. I have no doubt he’s going to come and perform for us.”