ANDREW THOMAS is confident Airbus will “only improve” after pushing Bala Town all the way.

The Lakesiders were in control at the break as a brace from Chris Venables, which included a contentious penalty, left Airbus playing catch-up.

But the Wingmakers rolled their sleeves up, putting Bala under intense pressure, that unfortunately for the hosts on yielded Curtis Strong’s fine long-range strike.

Try as they might, Airbus were unable to find a leveller and their return to the top-flight ended in defeat, but assistant boss Thomas was pleased with what he saw from his side.

“We’ve set the standards now,” said Thomas. “There is still so much more to come from this side, who were playing together for the first time. We will only improve.

“We are taking the positives out of a very good performance. We dealt with their long ball game and we looked strong throughout the game.

“In the second-half we were outstanding.”

On the penalty decision that handed Venables the chance to open the scoring after a collision with Airbus stopper Dave Roberts, Thomas added: “I will watch it back, but I don’t think I’ve seen a penalty given after a goalkeeper has claimed the ball.

“They should also have had a sending-off for a scandalous tackle in the first-half as well.”

Bala goalscorer Venables was delighted to have come away from the Airfield with all three points.

“It was a fantastic result for us,” Venables told Bala’s official website.“It’s a tough place to come, but we came for the three points and that’s what we got.

“On reflection, we would have liked to have gone in at half-time with a couple more goals, which would have made the second-half an easy job.

“We knew they’d come out in the second-half and throw the kitchen sink at us, which they absolutely did and they scored a fantastic goal.

“It makes it even more pleasing to have come away with the win.”

Fellow top-flight new boys, Penybont, also suffered a 2-1 defeat as Barry Town United spoiled the party.

Kane Owen put Penybont in-front from the spot, but that was cancelled out soon after by Kayne McLaggon.

And Jonathan Hood added another superb strike to his collection with the winner.