Croft would relish Lions call

Tom Croft admits he would relish the opportunity of becoming a Lion if he receives a call up prior to or during the summer tour. [more]

Croft would relish Lions call

Tom Croft admits he would relish the opportunity of becoming a Lion if he receives a call up prior to or during the summer tour.

The Leicester flanker missed out on selection for the original 37-man squad but has since been in scintillating form for his club.

With Alan Quinlan yet to appeal a 12-match ban that would rule him out of the tour of South Africa, Croft is being tipped to fill the void left by the Irishman.

"Whatever happens, happens. If I get the call it would be massive and several players have told me how it feels to be a part of a Lions tour," said Croft.

"To even be talked of as a potential Lion was an achievement in itself. If I got the chance of course I’d go for it.”

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Despite the disappointment of being left out of Ian McGeechan’s squad in late April, Croft says the buzz of domestic rugby has helped him put any frustrations to the back of his mind.

The 23-year-old has helped the Tigers reach both the Guinness Premiership and Heineken Cup finals  – achievements that have made it easier to put the Lions to the back of his mind.

"When I was first left out I was disappointed but I’ve had so much to think about with Leicester that I haven’t had too much time to dwell on it,” added Croft.

"If I was at club that hadn’t made any finals and was sitting on a beach I’d be thinking what could I have done to improve my chances? But I have got so much to think about here, with a massive final at the weekend, that I haven’t got room to think about other things."

If the selection call does eventually come for Croft, whether it be as a result of Quinlan’s suspension or as late injury replacement, the Leicester Academy product would be an extremely proud man.

The former Oakham schoolboy only made his England debut in 2008 and is under no illusions as to how big an achievement it would be to be named among Britain and Ireland’s elite just a year into his international career.

"The Lions is massive. It’s like the Heineken Cup, if you speak to people who have won the Heineken Cup, the way they speak about it so passionately makes you realise how important it is. 

"The Lions is the same. Until you have actually experienced going on a tour, you can’t really say how it feels. If I got the chance I would go full-on to seize the opportunity."

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