BILLY Moulton-Day hit the ground running as he made an instant impact on his Witham Cricket Club debut.

The former Sudbury man was playing his first game for Witham as they travelled to Maldon and an early burst of wickets helped give them the perfect foundation for a second consecutive Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship division one victory.

Witham's nine-wicket win saw their unbeaten start to the new campaign continue and skipper Jake Wakelin said Moulton-Day's early three-wicket blast, coupled with one in a solid spell of bowling by Shaun Bragg, rocked the hosts and helped put them in a position that they were unable to recover from.

Maldon were skittled out for 114, with Wakelin and Greg Stephens also taking three wickets each, before Michael Godwin and James Smith led Witham over the line with ease.

Wakelin said: "It was a pretty convincing win to be honest and a scorecard like that speaks for itself really.

"We were missing a few key players, but we still produced a very dominant display.

"We got off to a flying start with Billy (Moulton-Day) taking three quick wickets on his debut for the club and Maldon were 20 for four.

"You don't win too many games from a position like that.

"Billy bowled with pace at the start and Shaun Bragg had amazing control so when myself and Greg (Stephens) came on, we were able to get into their middle order. "It's nice when you can do that because their batsmen have to go on the attack and we just kept picking up wickets.

"The damage had been done early on and 114 was never going to be enough for them.

"Maldon won their first game and they are not a bad side; they are are very established division one side but we just put in a good performance against them."

The win continued the start to the season that Wakelin had been looking for from his team as they continued the strong form they had at the end of last year in the hunt for a first-ever Two Counties title.

He added: "We have been slow starters in the past couple of seasons when we've had early hiccups, but we won 12 in a row at the end of last season and, including the win we had in a pre-season game, it's now three in a row at the start of this year.

"That's a great position to be in. "Winning is a habit just as losing can become one and we just want to keep it going."

Witham now host reigning champions Worlington on Saturday and Wakelin is expecting to be able to name a strong line-up that may include overseas players Ken McClure if the New Zealander's visa paperwork has cleared in time.

Wakelin said: "We're looking strong for the game against Worlington as we'll have Leroy Facey and Jack Pawsey coming back and we may have Ken (McClure).

"We've been waiting on his international visa to be cleared but as soon as that's through he'll be on the next flight over.

"Every game is going to be a test as there are no whipping boys in this league, but Worlington are the champions and we know it's going to be a massive game.

"They are a good side who only lost twice all last year. "They haven't had an ideal start but they are still a very good side so we have to be ready for them."