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PREVIEW: POOLE v OXFORD (Champ)

POOLE kick off their Championship title defence as they resume rivalries with Oxford at Wimborne Road today (Friday) after a 15-year absence.

The Pirates have confirmed a normal 7.30pm start time for the meeting after initially planning to run earlier in the day.

Cheetahs reserve Josh Macdonald has been ruled out after a crash at Cowley on Wednesday, with Nathan Stoneman standing in as a guest.

Poole promoter Danny Ford said: “I want to emphasise that we have reverted to our normal start time of 7.30pm for this meeting.

“Initially we were going to make it an earlier start but with AFC Bournemouth having a home game on Friday too we wanted to give due consideration to the fan base that follow both sports.

“The 7.30pm start will offer those fans the opportunity to come on down to Wimborne Road after the Cherries’ game.”

Oxford star Troy Batchelor, who scored a maximum on Wednesday, said: “Every meeting is the same. We can’t worry about who we’re racing and where – we’ve just got to go out there and do the job we know we can.

“If we do what we’re capable of, then we can win the meeting – no doubt about it.”

POOLE: Steve Worrall, Zach Cook, Richard Lawson, Ben Cook, Danny King, Drew Kemp, Nathan Ablitt.

OXFORD: Troy Batchelor, Jack Thomas, Cameron Heeps, Kyle Newman, Scott Nicholls, Nathan Stoneman, Dillon Ruml.