British and Irish Lions: Boyhood dream for Billy Twelvetrees
Last Updated: 13/06/13 6:45am
Billy Twelvetrees is out to make an immediate impression after being called up to the British and Irish Lions squad.
The Gloucester centre has left England's base in Buenos Aires, where he had been preparing for the second Test against Argentina, to join up with the Lions in Sydney.
With Brian O'Driscioll and Manu Tuilagi carrying knocks, Twelvetrees will provide cover for the centre positions.
And having listened to the 2001 third Test between the Lions and Australia on the radio, the 24-year-old is thrilled to get his chance with the current squad.
"I am hugely honoured to be thought of and very excited to get out there and join up with the squad," said Twelvetrees.
"It is a boyhood dream. I remember the Lions in 2001 in Australia. We were going on holiday to Devon and I listened to that third Test defeat on the radio.
"My mother's side of the family is Australian and it is something dear to my heart. It was disappointing back then but to go out there and meet up with the squad now is pretty cool.
"You look at the history of the Lions and not having won a series in so many years, it is exciting to be involved in what potentially could be a winning Lions series."
Twelvetrees can play either at fly-half or in the centres, however he is not concerned at what number shirt he pulls on.
"Like any team you get jumped into, if you don't make your presence known straight away there is no point being there," Twelvetrees said.
"You get called up for a reason and you have to impose yourself and do the best you can.
"I will play anywhere. To get the opportunity to put on the red shirt will be massive for me my family. I am sure I will slot in and do the best I can, whether it is 10, 12 or 13."