ONE youngster looking forward to the start of the Royal London One Day Cup competition is George Thomas who last year scored 75 off 77 balls on his Somerset debut in the 50 over competition.

That was much to the delight of the Somerset fans who love to see the emergence of a local player, writes Richard Walsh.

Thomas who is 18 years old, has just completed his A levels at King’s College, is part of the Somerset Academy and plays his club cricket for Taunton St Andrews.

Since then Thomas has spent a successful winter with the England Under 19s firstly in Sri Lanka and then at the Under 19 World Cup in West Indies.

This season he has been studying for his A levels but still managed to enjoy some good returns with both bat and ball, including last week against Worcestershire Seconds when he scored 91 off 112 balls with 10 fours and four sixes and took three for 65. He then rounded off the week with a century for Saints on Saturday.

Earlier this week Thomas said: “I was pretty happy with the way that I played last year so I am hoping to get another opportunity to show what I can do in the Royal London again this season.

“I have been putting in some pretty decent performances which I am happy with. Im also glad that I am getting some good returns with the ball as well as with the bat so hope I can transfer this into the white ball game. I see myself as an all rounder so I want to be picked for my bowling as well as my batting.”

“I finished school last month so I am waiting for my results and playing as much cricket as I can. I think I am heading off to South Africa to the Gary Kirsten Academy this winter which is a great opportunity.”

How does Thomas stand contractually with the county?

“At the moment I am on an Academy contract but hopefully I will get to sign a contract with Somerset at the end of the summer, or when I get back from South Africa, but if not I have got a back up plan to go to University.

“I am hopeful that I will get a contract but I know that I have to keep on putting in performances to show what I can do. I am also hoping to be in the squad.”

Thomas added: “My games for Somerset last year showed me that I can do it. Since then I have been lucky enough to have been away playing while ball cricket this winter with England Under 19s so I am feeling s lot more confident and really looking forward to the Royal London competition next week.”

Before then Thomas is hoping to be included in the Somerset squad for their warm up games against Cornwall at Truro on Sunday and Devon at Bovey Tracey on Tuesday.