HADLEIGH and Thundersley started the season with a 41 run defeat against Chingford.

Hadleigh - who were promoted from Division One last term - were bowled out for 156 in reply to Chingford’s 197.

But Hadleigh skipper Richard Revell was keen to remain upbeat.

“We lost the toss and Chingford elected to bat but we started really well and had Chingford at 60/5,” said Revell.

“With a few stops for rain the pitch deteriorated. However, one of their batsmen went on to get a good hundred and Chingford were able to post a score of 197 all out.

“We were very happy to keep them under 200.”

But, ultimately, the wet weather played a part in determining the outcome of the game.

“The rain continued to fall during lunch and proved very difficult to bat on during our innings against a strong opening bowling attack,” said Revell.

“We were going along nicely with our chase but, unfortunately, lost too many wickets at regular intervals which resulted in us being bowled out for 156.”

Hadleigh picked up five points for their efforts.

But Revell felt it was the century from Chingford’s Alexander Maskell which enabled the visitors to triumph at John Burrows.

“Ultimately, it was the hundred from their player that just took the game out of reach,” said Revell.

“But it was a positive start to the league campaign and proved we can compete with a strong Premier League team.”

Chingford batted first and made 197, with 118 of those runs being scored by Maskell.

Adam Dobson, with figures of 3-32, was the pick of Hadleigh’s bowlers while Sam Handley (2-51) and Haider Ali Syed Zaidi (2-55) also chipped in.

But, in reply, Hadleigh were bowled out for 156.

Dobson top scored with 28, while Adam Soilleux added 22.

Hadleigh will now be looking to bounce back at Hornchurch this weekend.