Melton South Royals are hoping to build on last season’s Victorian Turf Cricket Association west A1 results.

The Royals finished sixth last season in their first season in the VTCA, at times showing they could match it with the top sides.

President Paul Davies said the club thinks it has the right mix to challenge this season.

“It’s going really well and we’ve recruited,” he said. “We’ve got guys wanting to come to our club. We hope these guys will help to take us to finals, if not the grand final.”

Tom Button, a wicketkeeper batsman, has come across from Victorian Sub-District Cricket Association side Melton.

Matthew Kozole joins the Royals from Laverton as an assistant coach and opening bowler and Graeme Bennett has crossed from Deer Park.

Last year’s captain, Paul Hetherington, has taken over the coaching reigns from Blake Ivory. Davies said Hetherington was ready to step up to the next level.

“We had a few people interested in the role and when it came down to it, we thought Paul was the right person,” he said.

The club is again fielding five senior sides, with two sides – the seconds and the one-day team – defending premierships.

The club also has two junior sides this season, up from one last season. Two years ago the club didn’t have a single junior side.

A big change for the club in the off season, has been a name change. The club was previously known as Melton South Primary School Cricket Club.

Davies said the timing had been right to change the name.

“We originally started as a junior club,” he said.

“In recent seasons we’ve had no affiliation with the school. We moved location from opposite the school to Melton Recreation Reserve a couple of seasons ago. That’s where Melton South Football Club is also based. It’s been something the players have been asking for a number of years.”

The start of the Royals’ season was delayed a week.

With a number of grounds not ready, VTCA officials decided to postpone the opening round.

Round one matches will now be played on the reserve day, December 3.

The Royals will be hoping to get out on the field this weekend against Seabrook in a one-day match.

In other matches, Melton Centrals will play Grand United.

In north A1, Sydenham Hillside will face Caroline Springs.