North Devon’s new captain Barney Huxtable wants to find a level of consistency that will take the Premier title back to Instow this season.

North Devon’s last title win was 2011 when they beat Sidmouth by 33 points. Since then North Devon have finished fifth, fourth and fifth last year without ever looking like winning it again.

Huxtable, who has taken over from the retired Matt Westaway, played almost every game last season.

The one thing he learned above all others was the penalties for inconsistency.

“We underperformed last season as the side that beat Sidmouth and Exmouth could only finish fifth,” said Huxtable.

“One week we would be brilliant, the next dreadful, which I suppose you are going to get with a young side, which ours is.

“I hear people are tipping us to win it this year, but we must not let it get to us.”

North Devon’s inconsistency is best highlighted by their inability to get a winning run going last season.

The only time they won two games in a row was right at the end when they defeated Exmouth then Sidmouth on successive Saturdays.

North Devon do have players other teams fear, which is why the whisper on the Premier circuit is they are the team to beat. There is a good chance Somerset will release one of the Overton twins to play – last season it was mainly Jamie – but both can change a game in five or six overs.

North Devon will have ex-Warwickshire all-rounder Tom Allin again this season. He showed how good he is playing for Devon against Wales on Sunday.

Allin was a bit too quick for the Wales middle order. Had they been good enough to get close enough to edge the ball he would have had a hatful of wickets.

Jack Popham has arrived from Barnstaple & Pilton and, once over a side strain, will be a handful for Premier batters. Josh King (ex-Bideford) has bowled well for Devon in trial games since making the switch round the headland.

The overseas player is Quintin Dreyer, a batting all-rounder from Cape Town who has been training with Western Province Amateurs.

Dan Da Costa, a 16-year-old student at Shebbear College with Western Province connections, offers a wicketkeeping option if anything happens to Rob Ayre.

Two other incomers are Callum French, a left-hand bat and off-spin bowler who plays for Cambridgeshire,

and Stefan James, a middle-order bat and spin bowler, who adds a bit more depth to the squad.