KENN skipper James Mason has signalled his side’s intent this season by making a clutch of signings to strengthen the 1st XI.

The Villagers were fourth in the D Division West last season, well adrift of top two Shaldon and Ashburton in the promotion race.

Kenn skipper James MasonMason, formerly a successful skipper in league and cup with Bovey Tracey 2nd XI, wants to see Kenn up there this season and realises more fire power is needed.

Jack Thomas, who has flitted between Bovey and Chudleigh in recent seasons, arrives as a bowling all-rounder. He played through the age groups for Devon up to under-16 before rugby with Exeter Youth got in the way.

Ollie Thomas, Jack’s elder brother, joined Kenn midway through last season and collected 12 wickets in a handful of appearances.

Arren De Young, another ex-Bovey Tracey hand, has joined Kenn along with ex-Stokeinteignhead seamer Tom Wills.

Stokeinteignhead have dropped out of 1st XI league cricket this season but Wills didn’t want to drop down to 2nd XI action with them.

Back at Kenn after a couple of years along the A38 at Chudleigh is medium pacer Hugh Stronge.

“Hugh tried his hand in the A Division and wanted to come back and join the revolution,” quipped Mason.

With Martin Swannell (ex-Sidmouth and Paignton) and Mason already signed on, Kenn have the look of challengers about them in the D West this season.

Mason wants to take the club upwards and says getting the infrastructure and youth system in place is crucial.

“Currently, five of our juniors are playing East Devon age-group cricket – a real success story for a club of our size,” said Mason.

“We have obtained grants for new covers and a new mower and are looking to expand further.

Pre-season training is under way every Sunday night at the Devon Cricket Centre on the University of Exeter campus. Call Mason on 07890 930028 for details.