NORTH Devon have been busy recruiting new players before the Premier season starts in little more than a month’s time.
Tom Popham, the bating brother of Jack Popham, has followed his fast-bowling sibling over from Barnstaple & Pilton.
Rumours of South African all-rounder heading to Instow have proved unfounded as this summer’s overseas player is Australian Callum Hotham.
Hotham, 21 in August, is a wicket-keeper batsman playing Premier Grade cricket for Caloundra in South.
He moved to Caloundra last season (2016/17) following four seasons playing for City Colts in the Bathurst District Cricket Association (1,205 runs at 41.55).
Hotham played a raft of representative cricket as a teenager.
He played for BDCA in the Mitchell Cricket County and was instrumental in helping the Association to their fifth straight Presidents Cup title last season.
Hotham also represented the Mitchell Cricket County in the Western Cricket Zone – Inter Council Open. He’d previously played for the Western Zone Under-19s, helping them to the Country Cricket NSW - Country Colts title, where he averaged 26.67.
Hotham has previously played across the lower grades for Penrith, in the Sydney Grade Competition (2013/14). He enjoyed a prolific school career, representing the St Stanislaus College 1st XI for several seasons before graduating in 2012/13.
During his final year, he was selected to vice-captain the Independent Schools Association and was also involved with the Western Zone age-group representative squads.
Hotham has spent the past two seasons playing in the Somerset Division of the West of England Premier League for Glastonbury.
He didn’t set the world alight during his maiden stint in 2015 (388 runs at 21.56), but produced the goods on his return, hitting centuries against North Perrott (147) and Wembden (113) en-route to 520 runs at 37.14.
North Devon still have some gaps to fill as they have lost early order batters Barney Huxtable (Port Talbot) and Max Curtis (Clevedon), who have left the area.
Jack Popham is recovering from a broken collar bone sustained playing football, but should be fit for the start of the league campaign on May 6.