Amar Virdi: Surrey youngsters have head start because of club role models

Amar Virdi
Amar Virdi has taken 10 wickets at an average of 35 in his four first-class matches

Surrey's young players benefit from a head start because of the role models at the club, says Amar Virdi.

Virdi starred alongside Sam Curran and Ollie Pope as Surrey opened their County Championship season with a 139-run win over Hampshire.

The 19-year-old, who took a career-best 4-79 in the match, says teammates like Rikki Clarke, Gareth Batty and Jade Dernbach help create a "great mix".

"We have so much experience to draw from," the off-spinner said.

Virdi took the wickets of Hashim Amla, James Vince, Rilee Rossouw and Kyle Abbott - all current or former international players - as Surrey overcame Hampshire at the Oval, despite Sam Northeast's 129.

His performance in the closing stages followed 19-year-old Curran's figures of 4-39 in the first innings and 20-year-old Pope's career-best 145 with the bat.

The youthful trio's contributions were key for Surrey, who won just two and drew 10 of their 14 Division One matches last season, largely because of a benign Oval wicket well-suited to batting.

Their development, along with that of England's Tom Curran, 23, highlights the success of Surrey's development programme.

"Especially for me, being young and coming into the side, there's so much I can pick up on and learn from," Virdi told BBC Radio London.

"We're not finding that it's taking us a long time to learn. We're almost getting a head start with how much knowledge there is in the dressing room.

"It's unbelievable how lucky we are to have these kinds of people around us."

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