The captain of the team with the worst batting record in the MP Sports Cherwell League is confident that his side will come good before too long.

Dan Hartley, the Abingdon Vale skipper, has seen his side dismissed for 101, 88, 48 and 39 in their four Division 2 games this season.

“Our batsmen have struggled badly against the seaming ball,” he said.

“I can’t remember the ball seaming around as much as it has in the first month this season. And they have been found out against some excellent bowling.”

Over the past two seasons, Vale have lost talented batsmen such as Ed Tilley, Ben Humpage, Dan King and Mike Cook, who is having foot reconstruction surgery.

But Hartley is confident the team still have the ability to score runs.

“These are still the best batsmen in the club, who have scored runs in the past,” he said. “And I’m confident, it’s only a matter of time before they come good.

“We just need to find two batsmen who can give us the impetus of a good start. That’s not been happening so far.

“We have at least five batsmen capable of getting fifties.

“But our top individual score is just 25, which speaks for itself.

“The good thing about our play this season, is that we’re bowling sides out. We have one of the best attacks in the division.”

Indeed, Abingdon won one of those four games when they shot out Banbury Twenty for 50 after they themselves had been dismissed for just 88.

Vale’s key man has been Graham Charlesworth, the former Oxford all-rounder, who joined them this season.

Charlesworth appeared to have produced a match-winning spell of 8-23 from 13.1 overs to dismiss hosts Long Marston for 75 on Saturday.

Only Australian Pete Toovey (39) hung around, but his runs proved crucial as he then returned figures of 9-11 from 10.2 overs as Vale crashed to a humiliating 39 all out.