Former Shropshire all-rounder Alex Huxley has been confirmed as the man who will skipper Whitchurch Cricket Club’s first team in their bid to bounce back into the Birmingham League at the first time of asking. Huxley, 32, took over as captain of the Heath Road Club midway through last season, but was unable to halt a slide which eventually saw them finish bottom of the Birmingham League Division Three. However, the club will start as of one of the favourites to win the Shropshire League title – and regain their place in the West Midlands’ strongest cricket competition. Iain Marsh, the new chairman of cricket at Whitchurch, and his predecessor Martin Jones met Huxley last week and later confirmed the former Oswestry player was the man they wanted to lead the club into a new era. “Alex will be an important player batting in the top four and we hope he will get a lot of runs to add to the 350 he scored last season,” said Marsh. Marsh also announced that two other key men, Ejaz Yousaf and Kirsten Ali, have also committed themselves to the club for the new season. “Ejaz scored more than 350 runs and took 26 wickets this year, and I’m hoping he will play a vital role in the club’s search for success in 2017,” said Marsh. “Kirsten is another fine batsman for us, and he will also keep wicket in the new season.” Another bonus for Whitchurch is that all-rounder Elliott Bowen should be available on a more regular basis. “Elliott has had a change of circumstances and will be able to play more games,” added Marsh. “He will be very important member of the batting and bowling units.” Marsh is hoping to bring in another two or three players before the season gets under way in April. Mike Ellis has been named captain of the club’s second team, while Dave Weaver will skipper the newly-formed midweek side in the Shrewsbury Evening League.