HARVEER Gandam insists that Burnham will “live and learn” after a narrow 18-run defeat at Henley on Saturday.

Henley – Division One runners-up last season – set a target of 255-7 from their allotted 50 overs with skipper Michael Roberts (89) and Richard Morris (50) top scoring. The pair also put on 86 runs for the fourth wicket.

Muhammad Haroon and Sulaiman Javed were the pick of the Burnham bowlers, both taking 2-50 from 10 overs.

Burnham were bowled out for 237 after 48.3 overs in reply with Gurpreet Singh Basran (55) and first team debutante Raminder Singh (62) coming close to securing the win.

Keegan Russell led the Henley bowling attack with 4-39. He was supported by Tom Nugent (2-38) and Tahir Afridi (2-40).

“It was certainly a better performance than the week before,” Burnham skipper Gandam told the Observer. “Obviously we came up short but there are a couple of positives to take and we know what we need to do to move forward as a group.

Royal Borough Observer:

PHOTO: Muhammad Haroon recorded figures of 2-50 for Burnham.

“It was a game of two halves in the first innings. We did not get off to a great start with the ball and we didn’t pick up early wickets, but the wicket is very good early on in the season. There was more pace on the ball and it was slightly easier for the batsman.

“We went to tandem spin bowling 20 overs in and really pegged them back. We picked up wickets and the bowling was not easy to score off.

“Three hundred was on the cards if the batting continued but I was pretty content for us to drag them back to 255 as you could chase five an over on that wicket.

“I thought 255 was slightly a sub-par total, about 15-20 runs light, but in the end we came up short.”

Gandam continued: “We contributed to our own downfall a little bit. What cost us is we lost three wickets in the space of six or seven overs and the new batsman had to dig in. The run chase would not have been on if we lost another wicket at that stage.

“But, credit to Henley, they took some world class catches and fielded excellently.

Royal Borough Observer:

PHOTO: Sulaiman Javed (pictured batting) took 2-50 for Burnham with the ball.

“Raminder smashed a quick 62 on his debut. He was clearing the boundary with ease. He and Gurpreet are the type of batsman that can deal in boundaries. Once they were set, it was always going to be on and I thought we were favourites at one point.

"Henley fielded brilliantly, and if they didn't take their catches it could have been different.

"We needed nine runs an over from the last five overs and had Raminder stayed at the crease the match could have been won, but you live and learn."

Commenting on his aims for the season, Gandam said: "It is clear individually what we need to, but as a team it's better lose a couple early on than at a crucial time of the season.

"We need a couple in the top four to feel it and go and get a score "I'm really happy with the middle order. They are all contributing with good scores but we need to see some improvement from the top order.

"We're optimistic and just want to play good cricket and take care of our own performances.

"We have got a really good young side with a healthy squad so it's about translating that into good performances."

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