LANCASHIRE ace Haseeb Hameed has told the Red Rose's exciting crop of youngsters to make the most of the experience around them this season.
The 20-year-old has led the way for Lancashire's next generation with a stunning breakthrough campaign in 2016 that ended with an England Test debut on their tour of India.
The Bolton youngster's start to life as a Test cricketer was cut short by a broken finger and he sustained another blow on the hand for Lancashire against Cambridge MCCU this week, but scans have cleared him of any bone damage.
Hameed will hope to be fit to face Essex in the County Championship curtain-raiser this Friday where Glen Chapple is likely to field some of the county's exciting youngsters alongside more experienced players such as captain Steven Croft, Kolpak recruit Dane Vilas, West Indies batsman Shiv Chanderpaul as well as Jimmy Anderson.
And while Hameed hopes his success can inspire other Lancashire youngsters he has urged them to pick the brains of the more experienced players in the Old Trafford dressing room as well.
"Things have happened quite quickly for me and that shows it can happen quickly," Hameed said.
"We’ve got a very exciting young squad, we’ve got guys like Shiv Chanderpaul, Dane Vilas, Crofty to learn from.
"That’s what I did when I walked into the side. I had Crofty, Ashwell Prince, Alviro (Petersen), I picked their brains and learnt and picked up ideas here and there to try and get one step ahead of the game.
"If I was to give them one bit of advice it would be to pick the senior guys brains. That definitely helped me and it’s nice to chat cricket and try and learn about things, because more often than not they’ve experienced what you’re going through and it’s nice to know they’ve come out on the other side and had a very successful career."
It's been a whirlwind 12 months for Hameed, who was still a relative unknown outside the Old Trafford dressing room 12 months ago.
But he insists his rapid elevation to international cricket hasn't changed him and he is focusing on performances for the Red Rose before aiming to return to the England squad for the Tests against South Africa in July.
"I don’t think too much has changed, I’m still as excited as I was last year," the Lancashire opener said.
"I’m still that same bubbly guy who’s excited to be around a great group of lads and an exciting squad.
"On a different level I guess things have changed. Things have progressed quickly for me.
"As soon as I’m back here I know what needs to be done, it’s all about putting it performances for Lancashire and helping us win games again, and that’s my main focus going into the season."