KIDDERMINSTER Victoria skipper Jonathan Wright believes the Birmingham and District League Premier Division is the most open in years.

With defending champions Shrewsbury making a surprisingly poor start after defeats to Brockhampton and West Bromwich Dartmouth, teams are already sensing this could be the summer to win the league.

Shrewsbury, who are bottom of the table, remain favourites to finish top in September as they boast a strong squad.

But KVCC believe they have a chance after they recorded their first league victory against Himley on Saturday.

With Himley’s key men of Gregg Wright and Nathan Round having to bat at the bottom of the order because of injuries, the Chester Road side recorded a 32 run success, with bowler Richard Kimberlin starring.

Wright said: “The league is going to very very open this season.

“There are lots of strong teams this year and Shrewsbury losing twice is proof of that.

“Them losing has given everyone in the league some sense they have a chance this year.

“But there’s still a long way to go.

“We didn’t bat that well against Himley and they had a bit of misfortune but we managed to take advantage of it.”

KVCC maintained their good form on Sunday as they defeated Stourbridge by three wickets in the National Knockout Cup.

Connor Smith and Gareth Williams took two wickets each as the Black Country side made 177 all out.

Smith then top scored with 60 as KVCC replied with 179-7.

They will meet Himley in the second round on Sunday.

This weekend, they go to Knowle and Dorridge in the ;eague (noon start) on Saturday.

The Graham Williamson Trophy semi-final at Shrewsbury, which had been set to be played this weekend, has been moved to the end of the month.

l Himley report - Page 82