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2 /2003 first team club pre season preview
Kingston Bagpuize, promoted from Division 3 last season, have
suffered a blow with the loss of paceman Simon Launder to Banbury.
The Oxfordshire quickie's 53 wickets played a key role in Kingston's promotion
last term, but now he has decided to try his luck in the Home Counties Premier
Kingston will also be without Alan Norman, who has left the area, but they have
been boosted by the return of Dominic Pike from Oxford & Horspath and the
arrival of Will Rautenger, a South African all-rounder.
Kidlington, last season's Division 3 champions, have been busy recruiting during
the close season.
Aussie batsman Alex Lamb joins from Wimbledon, while opening bowlers Leighton
James, from Wales, and Kiwi Richard Wiley, who has played for New Zealand
Central Districts Under 19s, should boost the attack.
In addition, Sid Khan and Matt Clay move over from Henley.
New Oxford & Bletchingdon Nondescripts skipper Charlie
Baxter loses his predecessor Ed Butcher along with James Drake-Brock- man, who
have both left the area.
However, the new club, formed by the merger of Oxford Nondescripts and
Bletchingdon, have several new recruits with an international flavour.
Wicketkeeper/batsman Marco Colussi and opening bowler Matt Scrivens will be
vying for places with New Zealander Paul West, an opening batsman, Aussie Harry
Ellis, an opening bowler, and South African seamer Rudi du Pliess.
Great & Little Tew have recruited Kiwi all-rounder Lochlan
Munro, who has played grade cricket in Christchurch, and opening bowler Piers
Myatt from Finchampstead.
Broughton and North Newington duo Shane Faulkner, an opening batsman, and
all-rounder Ross Freeman have also joined, while James Risbridger has moved to
Sandford St Martin.
Former Suffolk batsman Adam King has joined Abingdon Vale and will play when his
work commitments as groundsman at Radley College allow.
Ross Buchanan will skipper Oxford & Horspath 2nd following the decision of
Rover Cowley's players to join the city's premier club.
He is accompanied by old Rover teammates Reg Finch and Dom Patel, while
promising young leg spinner Nathan Conn has joined from Didcot, and the club
have also required the services of all-rounder Johnny Nambiar.
Promising young all-rounder Calum Taylor joins Banbury 2nd from Oxford Downs
along with left-arm opening bowler Dale Haupt, nephew of first-team skipper
Oxfordshire Under 16 batsman Eddie Phillips will be keen to earn a regular
place, and the selectors' eyes will also be on Northants Under 16 bowler Ashley
Blanchard, who at 14 years of age is showing great promise.
Cumnor have signed batsman/wicket-keeper Mark Ham from Garsington, but the
balance of their recruiting has been bowlers.
These include seamers Ayaz Khan and Monteza Ali, and Zimbabwean Shane McDonald.
Witney Mills look set to continue with last year's squad, but have lost brothers
Charlie and Christian Brain, promising youngsters who were developing well in
the 2nd XI, to Shipton.
Despite losing Mark Goldsmith, who has left the area, and Rob Large, who has
joined Buckingham, Wolverton, relegated from the top flight last term, have
strengthened their squad.
All-rounder James Canwell returns after a year's absence and is joined by
all-rounder Zaheer Khan from Bletchley.