STEYNING Cricket Club captain Dave Kennett was pleased with his side’s efforts despite a first-round defeat in the Gray-Nicolls Twenty20 Cup.
Steyning kicked off the new season with a 18-run defeat to Middleton, who play two divisions higher, on Saturday.
However, captain Kennett was upbeat and said: “I felt we played really well in patches.
“They are a Premier Division side and, to have matched them for the most part, was pleasing.
“Patrick Colvin came in late on for them and smashed 35 from 16 balls to get them above 150.
“It looked for long periods that we would restrict them to under 150 but he made the difference.
“We struggled with the bat early on but Gary Hunt and Ed Lamb steadied the ship for us but we didn’t have quite enough to get the victory in the end.
“However, for the first game of the season against a really strong outfit in Middleton, it was really encouraging.
“We just need to take this performance into our game against Burgess Hill on Saturday now.”
Middleton won the toss and elected to bat first.
They got off to a solid start as Sean Heather (55) and Beck Hemingway (21) put on 45 for the first wicket.
Will Burrows, at number four, hit 37 from 31 balls and Colvin crashed a quickfire 35 to push his side’s total up to 165-5 from their 20 overs.
Andy Isaacs claimed two wickets, while Lamb and Oliver Collins both picked up one each.
Steyning struggled in reply and slipped to 34-4.
However, Hunt (55) and Lamb (40) steadied the ship and got their side up to 118 when Lamb was dismissed.
Two more wickets fell as Steyning finished their 20 overs on 147-7.
Hemingway was the star with the ball for Middleton as he picked up 3-13 from his four overs.
Jamie Thompson backed up Hemingway well and claimed 2-27 from his four overs.
Steyning host Burgess Hill in their first Sussex League Division 3 match of the season on Saturday.