Melton South Royals’ poor start to the season continued with a second straight loss in the Victorian Turf Cricket Association’s Russell Pollock Shield division 5 competition.

After dropping their first match to Melton Centrals, the Royals were poor against Bellbridge on Saturday.

Royals captain Paul Hetherington said they never looked likely.

Bellbridge made 8-176 off its overs before the Royals were bowled out for 140.

“We never got going,” Hetherington said. “In previous years we’ve had poor starts, but we were hoping to get off to a good start this year.

“They played better than us. We conceded 41 extras – and you can’t expect to bowl that and win at first XI grade cricket.

“That was the difference … we didn’t execute.” Hetherington was the pick of the bowlers, with three wickets.

Photo by Damjan Janevski.

With the bat, Matthew O’Brien top scored with 37 and Hetherington scored 32.

“We were 3-20 so we were behind the eight ball to start with,” Hetherington said.

“So far we’ve had little patches of good cricket, but we haven’t had everyone to put it all together.”

Hetherington said that despite the poor start, finals remained the side’s aim.

He said they had added four players to the first XI team, including Nathan D’Antonio, O’Brien and Jonathon Caderamanpulle.

“We expect to play finals,” he said. “If we don’t reach that goal, we would be disappointed.”

D’Antonio, a key top order batsman, missed Saturday’s game , but is expected to return this week.

Melton Centrals made it two from two, beating Williamstown Colts.

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