SOMERSET’S new one-day captain Alfonso Thomas has urged his players to ‘be brave and play entertaining cricket’ as he sets about changing the county’s fortunes in limited overs cricket.

Thomas, 38, will captain the side in both 40 over and Twenty20 cricket this summer - taking over the reins from club captain Marcus Trescothick, who will continue to captain the four-day team – and the South African pace bowler hopes to use his new role to help develop the county’s talented pool of youngsters.

“I don’t think I want to change too many things, it’s going to be important to look after our youngsters,” he said.

“If you look at our record here over the past 12, 24 months, it’s probably not as good as it has been in the past.

“But I think the one thing we have identified in our one day game is to try and get our youngsters coming through – and to just try and be brave and obviously try and play entertaining cricket - and hopefully that will get the crowds in.”

“I see my role as talking to our young bowlers, trying to work out what they’re thinking and what they are trying to execute and where it’s going to take them four years to work it out for themselves – I’d like to think it’ll take them one or two years which gives them an extra two years to be good quality.

Director of cricket Matthew Maynard said the captaincy split would ‘release a bit of the burden’ on Trescothick and described Thomas as ‘the ideal captain for the shorter form of the game’.

He said: “Alfonso has played a huge amount of T20 cricket in the last few seasons both here and abroad. “He has tasted success in the IPL, the BPL and the Big Bash.

“His experiences of the intricacies of the T20 game at the highest level make him the ideal captain for the shorter form of the game.

“Marcus will continue to lead the side in the LV= County Championship and will still fulfil the crucial role of club captain.”