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Hornchurch captain Gordon confident of great couple of days

PUBLISHED: 17:00 09 May 2019

Hornchurch players celebrate the wicket of Akash Raji during Ilford CC vs Hornchurch CC, Shepherd Neame Essex League Cup Cricket at Valentines Park on 27th April 2019

Hornchurch players celebrate the wicket of Akash Raji during Ilford CC vs Hornchurch CC, Shepherd Neame Essex League Cup Cricket at Valentines Park on 27th April 2019

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The Harrow Lodge Park club will host Hadleigh & Thundersley and local rivals Upminster over the weekend

Billy Gordon is excited by the start of the Shepherd Neame Essex League Premier Division season and sure Hornchurch will begin the defence of their title with a win.

Hadleigh & Thundersley travel to Harrow Lodge Park looking to be the first side to claim the scalp of the 2018 league champions.

Although Hornchurch saw off the Essex club twice last season, they know they cannot rest on their laurels and Gordon feels the new recruits will help dispel any chance of complacency.

He said: "We have fresh people in, so they will be keen to get off to a good start. All the boys seem really up for it, so hopefully we can start strongly.

"We are looking forward to it and to getting the league season underway, but Hadleigh will be a tough test.

"They have had a good start to the season (in the cups) and it'll be a decent game. We just have to be switched on straight away and hopefully we make a good start."

After hosting Hadleigh in the league on Saturday, Hornchurch will entertain local rivals Upminster a day later.

The two foes will do battle in the second round of the ECB National Club Championship at Harrow Lodge Park and Upminster will be looking to upset the treble-winners.

Gordon is well aware of that, but also excited to face old friends, adding: "I think we will only have one person missing from the team on Saturday, so we will be pretty strong on Sunday.

"Hopefully we can get two wins this weekend, make a good start and carry it on from there, but we know it will be a tough season because a lot of sides are looking strong.

"I know a few of the boys at Upminster very well having played there and I know they will be keen to turn us over. It will be a good match and tough, but hopefully we come out on top."

Hornchurch secured victory in a rain-affected League Cup tie at Goresbrook last weekend with Mervyn Westfield on fire.

He smashed 116 off 68 balls in a total of 305-6 and the hosts could only make 97-3 off 21.4 overs before rain forced an early abandonment.

Gordon said: "Merv batted brilliantly and hit the ball miles, so hopefully there will be plenty more of that this season.

"He obviously gives us a lot of strength with bat and ball. It was a good win in the end, but it was freezing. The last two weekends have been terrible - the coldest I can ever remember playing in!"

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