Captain Luke Ryan is refusing to get carried away as Oxfordshire chase a third straight win when they face Staffordshire in the Unicorns Counties Trophy at Bicester & North Oxford on Sunday.

Oxon, who were runners-up to Devon in the final at Wormsley last August, have made a storming start in their bid to go one better this term, by posting crushing victories over Herefordshire and Bucks.

It’s put them in a strong position in Group 4, but Ryan is fully focused on the test awaiting his unchanged side this weekend.

The Banbury left-arm spinner said: “I don’t really look too much at the table.


“I just try and think one game at a time. Winning is a habit and I just try and target winning each game.

“We are more than capable of doing that. We did it last year. We won six in a row and reached the final, although we didn’t win it.”

Opening bowler Chad Keegan set the standard with four wickets in the ten-wicket victory over Herefordshire, while Karl Penhale matched the feat in the eight-wicket demoliition of Bucks, when Ollie Wright also shone on his debut.

Ryan said: “We have had a fantastic start. We have been fortunate to win the toss on both occasions in favourable conditions, but our bowlers still had to do the job.”

Staffordshire have so far beaten Bucks by seven wickets with captain Kadeer Ali, the brother of England star Moeen, hitting an unbeaten 106, before losing to Berkshire by six wickets with four balls remaining.

Oxon can take encouragement from their resounding 153-run victory when the two sides met last year.

And Ryan added: “They are a dangerous side. They won the three-day competition last year.

“We put in a good performance last year at Stone when we got up to 300 and Lloyd Sabin and Jonny Cater put on a good partnership.

“We hope we can put on a good show again. We are very confident in one-day cricket and Bicester has been a good ground for us.”

Oxfordshire: L Ryan (Banbury) capt, A Blanchard (Banbury), J Cater (Buckingham), H Darby (Banbury), R Kaufman (Old Northamptonians), C Keegan (Henley), K Penhale (Banbury), L Sabin (Banbury), R West (Banbury), J White (Great & Little Tew), O Wright (Banbury). 12th man: J Meardon (Oxford Downs).