BORONIA captain-coach Ben Stallworthy remains confident his side will play in the Eastern Cricket Association Dunstan Shield finals despite losing its opening game on Saturday.
The Hawks lost to Mulgrave by five wickets at Mulgrave Reserve after being put into bat and making just 126.
Stallworthy said his side, in its second season in the ECA's top league, had struggled after losing the toss.
"We didn't lose wickets early, we just had a hard time getting off to a good start," he said.
"The ball was doing everything and it was quite difficult condition. It was a good toss to win.
"We would have liked around 150 on that pitch but in our middle order we had a collapse and didn't rebuild."
Stallworthy said his side also had to lift its bowling.
"We were still in the game at tea because we had runs on the board," he said.
"If we had of bowled well we still could have won but we weren't consistent at both ends and that played a part as well." With English import batsman Daniel Newton on board, Stallworthy believes his side will recover, starting this Saturday when it hosts East Doncaster at Boronia.
"It's just week one and I have confidence in the side. We just had a bad day," he said.
"The plus from the weekend was the rest of our sides had wins, only the first XL had a loss."
Mulgrave captain Dean Day praised his young side for standing up and recording a very handy early season win.
"Any game you get in at this time of year is a bonus," he said.
"I was kind of hoping we wouldn't play and would get to make the game up in January but we have scored a very good win and next match we could get back four senior players."
Day said the Mulgrave Reserve curator had done an "pretty good job" to get the wicket ready for play.