Steve Rhodes believes Worcestershire's crop of promising youngsters can surprise some of the more experienced county line-ups this season.

Worcestershire's Director of Cricket does not want to place unnecessary pressure on the squad by making predictions ahead of the LV County Championship opener with Hampshire at the Ageas Bowl on Sunday.

But he has faith in the group which last year achieved several notable victories in the Twenty20 and 40 over competitions.

Rhodes said: "The last thing I want to do is put too much pressure on a young squad and it would be wrong to go out there into the media and tell everyone what we are going to do.

"I actually think one of the special things for this group of players is the way they could surprise a lot of the bigger teams.

"We did it a little bit last year in some of the one-day games we played, beating Somerset twice in the Twenty20 and Warwickshire and Nottinghamshire away in the 40 over competition.

"I'm very optimistic we can sneak along the rails and surprise a few. If that means we are in the shake-up for things at the end of the year, then great.

"We've not got quite the experience of some of the counties at the major Test grounds. But we've got a lot of good young players.

"There is some talent here and I'm very optimistic we will surprise a few teams and the public and media in the way we can play."