Budleigh Salterton make significant signings for a new Francis Clark Devon League campaign

Cricket - Budleigh in pre-season at Bradninch James Burke hits another boundary

Cricket - Budleigh in pre-season at Bradninch James Burke hits another boundary - Credit: Archant

It comes round quicker than ever, the Devon Cricket League season is once again upon us, writes Lloyd White.

It seems that September to December takes forever, however January to May flies by in a flash!

Budleigh Salterton CC are once again looking forward to what sees a record number of fixtures at Ottermouth, three new first XI squad members, a new 2nd XI captain, new committee members, and once again there is a buzz around the ground at the Friday club nights.

With the recent dry weather (touch wood) the ground is looking superb thanks to the work put in by Groundsman Chris Gore, Andy Procter, Phil Yolland, Joel Murphy and their hard working helpers.

The first home game of the season sees the first XI take on newly promoted Cornwood who will be looking to hit the ground running.

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However, Budleigh have recruited well. Whilst it’s unfortunate that the talents of all-rounder’s James Hudson and Charles Morris have been lost; the former going abroad to serve with the Armed Forces and Morris is this year playing as contracted player at First Class County Worcestershire.

In come Matt Kidd (from Bovey Tracey) and Richard Arnold (from Exmouth). Kidd is a fast bowling all-rounder who has represented Devon at most age groups and is now staking his claims in both the one day and championship senior sides.

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Arnold is a lively batting all-rounder with the ability to score quickly and also take snare batsmen with his wicket to wicket seamers.

The club has also recruited Sebastian Langridge from New Zealand as the overseas professional for this campaign.

Twenty-two-year-old Langridge is the son of former New Zealand state player Gary and has grown up with a cricket bat in his hand.

He was his high schools top run scorer in 2008 and took his side to the Auckland championship where he scored over 1,000 runs in a season with a top score of 142 not out and also hit five centuries.

He also played for the Australian Schools side in Brisbane. His wicket-keeping is an added bonus and has become a very fine glove-man behind the stumps.

has been coached and mentored by one of New Zealand’s greatest ever wicket-keepers, Ian Smith.

He made his premier debut at 16 hitting an unbeaten 66.

Since then he has scored over 1,000 club runs averaging over 36. He made his Hawke Cup debut at 19 and has averaged over 35 to date, whilst also setting the record for most dismissals in a game (eight).

He has also represented Auckland in various age group tournaments, including the Under-19s. Langridge is viewed as a potential first-class player and is in the mix for the Central Districts keeping position, having recently filled this role for the CD A side.

Langridge is also an enthusiastic level one coach who has extensive junior coaching experience, both home and abroad. He played in the Surrey County League for Worplesdon and Burpham in 2012, hitting 557 runs at 61.89 to top the Division 2 run aggregates.

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