Oxford MailRUGBY UNION: Exiles bank on Barkley (From Oxford Mail)

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RUGBY UNION: Exiles bank on Barkley

Oxford Mail: Olly Barkley eyes up a penalty for England during the 2007 World Cup. The former Bath and Gloucester stand-off is the first of London Welsh’s new signings Olly Barkley eyes up a penalty for England during the 2007 World Cup. The former Bath and Gloucester stand-off is the first of London Welsh’s new signings

FORMER England fly half Olly Barkley says he can’t wait to get stuck in after joining London Welsh.

The 32-year-old stand-off is the first of several signings the Exiles are set to unveil having secured promotion back to the Aviva Premiership last week.

Barkley, who joins Oxford-based Welsh after a four-month spell with the Scarlets, has won 23 caps for his country and was a World Cup runner-up in 2007.

He said: “I’m really looking forward to being part of what looks to be a great coaching team and a talented group of players.

“There looks to be a spirit amongst the group that I can’t wait to be involved with and I’m looking forward to the challenge of the Premiership with them all, and helping the club further establish itself at the Kassam Stadium and in Oxford.”

Barkley’s signing came as Welsh announced their Premiership home games would be at 2.30pm on Sundays unless otherwise dictated by television.

The fly half underlined his promise by making his England debut against USA in June 2001 aged 19 – before he had played a first-team game for Bath.

Barkley added on Twitter: “Can finally say I’ll be staying with my Welsh roots next year and signing for @LondonWelshRFC Can’t wait to get back to @premrugby and take on the challenge with what looks to be a team with talent and huge spirit. See you all soon!”

Greene King IPA Championship winners Welsh believe Barkley’s signing shows their intention to be “very competitive” in the top flight.

Head coach Justin Burnell said: “Olly has a wealth of experience, both at club and international level, and he’s exactly the type of player we’re looking for.

“He’s got a fantastic game understanding and his other biggest strong point is his accuracy with the ball.

“His goal kicking is phenomenal and we’ll need that in the Aviva Premiership.”

As well as scoring 1,588 points in 181 Premiership appearances, Barkley has racked up 737 points in 79 Heineken Cup and Amlin Challenge Cup matches.

The Exiles will learn today who their opponents will be in next season’s European Challenge Cup, while their 2014-15 season ticket launch is on Thursday at 9am.

Drink-binge driver is jailed over fuel spill

Oxford Mail: Oxford Crown Court

8:30am Wednesday 23rd July 2014

A DRINK-driver who caused a fuel spill after crashing his wife’s car into two trucks has been jailed for 16 months.

Vigil for ex-Gaza Scholar as wife and children are killed

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Wednesday 23rd July 2014

A FORMER Oxford Brookes Gaza Scholar is in intensive care and six members of his family dead after their home was bombed by Israeli forces.

17-year wait for killer to be brought to justice

Oxford Mail:

6:30am Wednesday 23rd July 2014

NOT long after 3am on Tuesday, August 26, 1997, petrol was squirted through the letterbox of 156 Magdalen Road, East Oxford, using two Tango bottles.

Man arrested after accident closes St Aldate’s

Oxford Mail:

6:00am Wednesday 23rd July 2014

A MAN was arrested for assault at the scene of an accident in St Aldate’s yesterday just metres away from the city’s police station.

A partial victory as school bus service saved for another year

Oxford Mail:

6:00am Wednesday 23rd July 2014

CAMPAIGNERS in West Oxfordshire say they have have gained a partial victory after an appeal overturned plans to end a free school bus service.

Update: Three arrested after Cowley Road pub fight

Oxford Mail:

9:12pm Tuesday 22nd July 2014

THREE people were arrested after a brawl on Cowley Road.

Oxford vigil in support of Gaza scholar

Oxford Mail:

5:40pm Tuesday 22nd July 2014

A vigil has now started for an Oxford Brookes Gaza Scholar in intensive care after losing five members of his family in an Israeli bombardment.

50 glorious years of a fine village institution

Oxford Mail:

5:00pm Tuesday 22nd July 2014

IN 1965, when the Beatles released their album Help!, residents in Towersey realised their village hall was in desperate need of repair.

Listen: Fiaz Munshi guilty of manslaughter over Magdalen Road arson as police apologise for blunder + Audio

Oxford Mail:

2:52pm Tuesday 22nd July 2014

FIAZ MUNSHI has been found guilty of manslaughter and not guilty of murder over the deaths of two children in an arson attack in East Oxford in 1997.

She was loved by so many: huge turn-out for the funeral of Liberty Baker

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Tuesday 22nd July 2014

MORE than 300 friends and relatives turned out yesterday to pay their final respects to Witney schoolgirl Liberty Baker.

Exhibition unravels the story of boy king’s tomb

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Tuesday 22nd July 2014

HIDDEN under the sand for centuries, this little statue will come face-to-face with thousands of visitors in Oxford.

Community association given stay of execution

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Tuesday 22nd July 2014

A COMMUNITY group was celebrating yesterday after being told it could stay at its base for the immediate future.

Operation clean-up on estate hit by mini whirlwind

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Tuesday 22nd July 2014

A CLEAN-up operation was under way yesterday to remove the damage caused by a whirlwind over the weekend.

Inspectors praise police, but officer morale ‘low’

Oxford Mail: police officer rear

8:00am Tuesday 22nd July 2014

INSPECTORS have praised Thames Valley Police for making savings while increasing the number of officers and staff in frontline roles.

ATHLETICS: Clarke keeping focused for Glasgow

Oxford Mail:

9:30am Wednesday 23rd July 2014

LAWRENCE Clarke will not allow himself to look beyond the Commonwealth Games as he prepares for two championships in three weeks.

CRICKET: Sorry Shrivenham bowled all out for 9

Oxford Mail: cricket generic

9:20am Wednesday 23rd July 2014

SHRIVENHAM 2nd captain Martin Hammond was rueing his side’s chronic availability after seeing them bow-led out for just nine runs in their Division 6 match at home to Faringdon 2nd.

London Welsh sign second row James Down

Oxford Mail: London Welsh are staying at the Kassam

9:18am Wednesday 23rd July 2014

London Welsh have made their 24th new signing of the summer after announcing the arrival of second row James Down.

CRICKET: Rae ton boosts Westbury

Oxford Mail:

8:10am Wednesday 23rd July 2014

BEN Rae smashed an unbeaten century as Westbury stretched their lead at the top with a 69-run win at Minster Lovell, writes David Quinn.

COMMONWEALTH GAMES: England out to shine on national service

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Wednesday 23rd July 2014

HANNAH England will not take making the final for granted when she competes in the 1,500m at Glasgow.

COMMONWEALTH GAMES: Chance encounter set Rivers on course

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Wednesday 23rd July 2014

WHEN Dan Rivers was first introduced to target shooting aged 13 at a fair with his grandad, he couldn’t have imagined it would one day lead to the Commonwealth Games, writes MATTHEW BRUCE.

Oxford United try out Slovakian goalkeeper

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Wednesday 23rd July 2014

FORMER Brighton and Swindon goalkeeper Peter Brezovan has joined up with Oxford United’s training camp at Bisham Abbey.

COMMONWEALTH GAMES: Douglas delight

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Wednesday 23rd July 2014

OXFORD City triple jumper Nathan Douglas has had to shrug off a series of injury setbacks to make the England team.

AUNT SALLY: Ruffels leads Garsington to break Six Bells' streak

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Wednesday 23rd July 2014

PREMIER Section leaders Six Bells C Kidlington lost for the first time this season as they were edged out in a thriller at Section 1’s Garsington Sports A, writes ANDY BEAL.

COMMONWEALTH GAMES: Buoyant French's medal tilt

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Wednesday 23rd July 2014

OAKLEY’S Matt French will compete in the double trap event as part of England’s 12-strong clay target shooting team.

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