The arrival of an exciting new talent and the return of an old favourite have given Oswestry’s cricketers a twin boost as they prepare for the new season in Division Two of the Birmingham League.
Roman Walker, a 16-year-old fast bowler from North Wales League team Marchwiel and Wrexham who has already opened the bowling for Glamorgan Second XI, has signed on for the Morda Road club after he was advised by Wales’s only First Class county to play his club cricket at a higher level.
Walker, who at 6ft 3ins has the ideal build for a fast bowler, has played for Wales at all age groups, and made his debut for the Principality’s Under-17 side two years when he was just 14 years of age.
“Roman comes to us highly recommended and we’ve been to watch him at indoor nets,” said Oswestry skipper Robbie Clarke.
“He’ll be a real handful opening the attack, and he’s a useful middle order batsman as well.”
Returning to Oswestry is wicketkeeper/ batsman Dean Suter, who has been playing for Shelton in the Shropshire League.
Suter was a key player in the Oswestry sides which won the Shropshire League championship in 2009 and the Birmingham League Divisions Three and Two titles in 2012-13.
“It’s great to have Sutes back,” said Clarke, “He’s one of the best keepers in Shropshire and a talented batsman.
“He’s a great character, who is a massive influence in the dressing room.”
On the downside, Oswestry have lost both opening bowlers from last season.
Clarke’s predecessor as captain Jonathan Miles, has moved to live in Norfolk, while former Shropshire paceman Dan Bowen has returned to his home town club Whitchurch.
“Dan has done really well for us over the past three years, but he has now moved back to live in Whitchurch and is going back to the club where he started his career. He goes with our blessing.
“Obviously that leaves us a fast bowler short, and we will definitely be bringing in someone else.
“We had discussions with two pacemen who were released by First Class counties at the end of last season, but both deals fell through.
“We might well have to look overseas – but if that’s the case, so be it.”
Oswestry have arranged a pre-season friendly against Whitchurch for April 22, with the Firsts away and the Seconds at home.
The Morda Road men start their Birmingham League campaign with a trip to C and R Hawks the following Saturday.