Wigan Warriors-bound Jackson Hastings "proud" to pull on Great Britain shirt
Jackson Hastings has vowed to represent the Lions "with dignity" after criticism in some quarters over his selection.
He is one of two Australians in the Great Britain line-up for Saturday's opener against Tonga and gets the nod at halfback ahead of the player he replaces at Wigan, George Williams.
Hastings, who qualifies through an English grandparent, said: "I understand what people think and who they want to represent this shirt (but) I'm very proud and privileged to be here.
"I don't make the quota rules, I qualify and I put my hand up, and I'm truly honoured to be a part of this group of players.
"I just want to represent myself and my family to the best of my ability, and represent the Lions on tour, with dignity.
"Hopefully I'll ave a long rep career."
St Helens' Lachlan Coote is also in the team while a third Aussie, Blake Austin, is in the touring party.
Hastings is set for a duel with his Salford halfback partner Tui Lolohea in the Lions' first match for 12 years.
"I count him as a brother but I'm sure we'll put that aside for 80 minutes," the 23-year-old told the BBC.
"I formed a special bond with him, I'm proud of how he bounced back from his time at Leeds."