TOMORROW Saturday (11am start), Banbury are the visitors to the Brakspear Ground in round 16 of
TOMORROW Saturday (11am start), Banbury are the visitors to the Brakspear Ground in round 16 of Division 1 of the Home Counties Premier League.
Winners over neighbours Great and Little Tew last weekend, Banbury now occupy second spot, 10 points ahead of Henley but 25 shy of leaders Finchampstead, who with clear water now between them and the chasing pack need only to win this weekend and next to clinch the championship, barring any points deductions that might occur.
On the strength of last weekend’s performance against Henley, it is unlikely that Finchampstead will slip up against Reading this weekend or against Slough in round 17. In the unlikely event of that happening, both Banbury and Henley need to win this encounter to stay in the hunt.
The corresponding timed fixture over at Banbury in June was called off without a ball being bowled owing to the ground being waterlogged in certain parts, so this will be the teams’ first encounter this season.
Led by Oxfordshire stalwart Lloyd Sabin, Banbury have enjoyed a successful campaign in 2016. Australian overseas Kurtis Patterson has departed for international duty and a possible replacement in the form of former South Africa star Herschelle Gibbs did not materialise. Veteran Craig Haupt continues to open the batting whilst West and Ryan offer experience in the middle order. Banbury also have plenty of bowling options to turn to. Last weekend, eight of the 11 that faced Tew put in bowling stints.
In the Thames Valley League Henley 2nds travel to Royal Ascot, Henley 3rds entertain Cookham Dean 2nds at Nettlebed while Henley 4ths travel to Yateley. All these matches get under way at 12.30pm.