England Lions: James Vince innings 'just the start' - Adams

James Vince
Vince was the top scorer in county cricket last season

James Vince's crucial century for the England Lions could be the first step in the Hampshire batsman fulfilling his potential at international level, says his county captain Jimmy Adams.

The 23-year-old made 152 not out, his first century for England's second-string side, to secure a draw against South Africa A in Bloemfontein.

"That knock will do him wonders," Vince told BBC Radio Solent.

"It will be a huge fillip for him and a platform to go on to bigger things."

Vince, who has been likened to former England skipper Michael Vaughan, made his Lions debut three years ago but had struggled to replicate his prolific county form.

He was the top-scoring player in county cricket last season, with his 1525 Championship runs one of the key factors in Hampshire's run to the Division Two title.

"With the pressure he was under - or at least he felt he was under - it's a great innings," added Adams.

England Lions
The two-match series against South Africa A ended in a 0-0 draw

"He's played a fair few games for the Lions and he possibly felt he hadn't achieved what he was capable of.

"We watch from afar and we feel for him because he hasn't quite delivered what we know he's capable of. Certainly this is exactly what we see on a daily basis at Hampshire and I really hope this is the start for him in terms of national achievements."

Adams has also played for the Lions and the 34-year-old said a place in the team came with its own unique pressures, admitting players feel like they are effectively auditioning for the senior Test side.

"Although you want to play for the team you're looking after number one really because it's a straight fight with the other batsman or bowler as to who's going to push for the next spot in the first team," said Adams.

"It's a slightly strange environment from that point of view."

Vince's innings also earned praise from Graham Thorpe, the England Lions batting coach.

"I thought James Vince played very well, probably the best I've seen him play in this environment," he said.

"It's very pleasing to see a lad take confidence and heart from his performance."

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