Newly-promoted Melton Mowbray faced a tough County League opener at Hinckley Amateur on Saturday and came up short.
The visitors gave a debut to new signing Carel Fourie for the trip to last year’s third-placed side and put the hosts into bat after winning the toss.
The bowling started well with both Mike Roberts and Fourie imposing an enormous amount of pressure with pace and accuracy.
Roberts fantastically bowled in the early stages with little reward, but the pressure allowed Fourie to break the opening partnership.
The South African bowled with great control to finish with figures for 5 for 46 and but for dropped chances his figures would have ended even more favourably.
Roberts’ hard work saw him finish with figures of 2 for 54 which included the prize wicket of the Amateurs skipper, caught at long off by Freer.
Melton skipper Ben Redwood worked hard to finish with figures 2 for 17, but the visitors found the middle portion of the Hinckley innings difficult.
The home side were eventually bowled out for 167, considered too many after their great start.
Melton’s reply didn’t start well as two quick wickets fell.
Fourie (42) steadied the ship and brought the game closer to Melton, but a steady loss of wickets saw Melton bowled put for 129, short by 38 runs. With the first game cobwebs blown away, Melton will look to make a positive start to their home fixtures on Saturday against Leicester Caribbean (1pm start).
Matchball sponsors: Kyrus Canine Specialists
Bowling: M. Roberts 9.4-1-54-2; C. Fourie 12-1-46-5; P. Stevenson 3-1-26-1; B. Redwood 7-2-17-2; L. Middleton 3-0-16-0.
Melton: P. Humphries 3, L. Freer 1, C. Fourie 42, M. Roberts 4, L. Middleton 11, M. Mabbutt 4, B. Redwood 7, S. Handley 16, P. Stevenson 8*, J. Tew 0, Extras 28. Total: 129.