JONNY Cater says Oxfordshire have the belief to bounce back from a difficult couple of days in Truro as they challenge for a semi-final spot on Sunday, writes JACK JOHNSON.

Oxon made a nightmare start to their Unicorns Counties Championship campaign when beaten by an innings and 42 runs in Cornwall earlier this week.

But the focus shifts from the three-day format to the 50-over game this weekend as Cater’s side take on Wiltshire in the quarter-finals of the Knockout Trophy at Aston Rowant (11am).

Oxon have named the same 12-man squad that travelled to Lisvane to beat Wales in the last round.

And Cater is backing his players to deliver again and book their place in the last four.

“We feel strong in our one-day game,” said the skipper.

“We believe we have the side to go to the latter stages of this competition and we have stuck with the team that has pretty much got us through to this stage.

“We’re happy with where things are at and we trust the players we’ve selected.

“The one-day game is a different skill and mindset. I believe we are suited to this competition.”

While it is a different format, the manner of the Cornwall defeat provided Oxon with clear areas requiring improvement in what has been an otherwise encouraging year so far.

With the hosts posting 317 all out in a Western Division encounter reduced to two days after the wet weather washed out Sunday’s play, Caters’ side struggled.

After being dismissed for 126, they were asked to bat again, with their frailties exposed once more in a second innings of 149.

“It was a challenging couple of days,” said Cater.

“Having Sunday washed out didn’t help, but they adapted quicker to the conditions than us and that’s the most important thing.

“We let them off the hook too many times as a bowling unit.

“They got 100 more runs than they should have.

“Overall, it was a little bit disappointing, but it has highlighted areas we need to work on and improve.”

Cater added: “You don’t turn in to a bad team overnight.

“We lost our first three-day game last year and won the next five.

“We’ve had a good season so far and we now have a massive match this weekend.”


Oxon: S Alam (Twyford), G Andrew (Ombersley), J Butcher (Abingdon Vale), J Cater (Buckingham Tn), O Clarke (Banbury), T Cosford (Horspath), J Garrett (Downend), R Kaufman (O Northamptonians), G Sandbach (Oxford Downs), J Thomas (Banbury), M Warner (Chesham), R White (Buckingham Tn).