PLAYING against quality players from across the border will stand North Wales cricketers in good stead.

That's the view of Russell Penrhyn-Jones after the Wales National County (North) opened their season with defeat versus Cumbria.

Next up is Wednesday's home 50-over clash with Staffordshire in St Asaph.

Team manager Penrhyn-Jones said: "The chase was affected by rain, but they were a very good side.

"Their first three bowlers all played first team cricket for Cumbria and two of those lads have been released by Durham.

"There are massive positives we can take.

"It's a massive thing, because some of the players have never played white ball cricket before."

A decision on the squad for next Wednesday's home 50-over game with Staffordshire has not yet been made, although wicket keeper Jack Gower is a doubt through injury.

Turning to North Wales League Premier Division action tomorrow and Pontblyddyn could not have wished for a tougher test.

They head to defending champions and title chasers St Asaph.

"I'm old school and I know St Asaph. They're a good side, but we're not going to lie down," said Pontblyddyn skipper Rhys Jones.

"We won't go there scared or frightened."

Tom Dawson will miss out for Pontblyddyn tomorrow, however they will be strengthened with the return of key players over the coming weeks.

"Going forward, to come back in are Chris Moss, Mike Littler and Glenn Chambers," added Jones.

"We are about sixth and we have got a good squad and we are confident.

"We aim to finish in the top half."

A first win of the season is Llay's target as they welcome Llandudno tomorrow.

It was a game of two halves last time out at powerful St Asaph, with Llay impressing in the field before capitulating with the bat.

Skipper Tom Crewe said: "We actually bowled and fielded well, but they are a class above.

"Gareth Goodson bowled fantastically for them."

Looking ahead to tomorrow, Crewe added: "No major changes to our side.

"We lost David Wright a couple of weeks ago.

"He's been moved to Hamburg with work for months - he's playing cricket there too.

"We hope to have Jack Aplin back from uni in June.

"We beat Llandudno twice last season and I'm expecting more grit with the bat than we displayed last week!"

A tough test is in store for fourth-placed Northop as they host Menai Bridge tomorrow.

Gresford, meanwhile, will look to continue their brilliant start to the campaign.

Matt Thompson's outfit welcome Pwllheli looking to make it five wins from five matches.

Thompson said: "Last week was another solid performance. A good platform laid by the top order before 17-year-old Wes Evans scored a brilliant 40 not out to lift us to an above-par total.

"All the seamers bowled well to contain Llandudno's top order, then Simon (Perry) came on and cleared up their tail.

"This week we are full strength for the first time this season!"

Elsewhere, Bangor are home to Mochdre.

Division 2: Bethesda v Mold 2nds; Carmel & District v St Asaph 2nds; Hawarden Park 2nds v Caernarfon; Menai Bridge 2nds v Northop 2nds; Mochdre 2nds v Bersham; Ruthin v Gresford 2nds.

Division 3: Abergele 2nds v Ruthin 2nds; Brymbo 2nds v Denbigh 2nds; Conwy 2nds v Buckley 2nds; Gwersyllt Park 2nds v Bethesda 2nds; Pontblyddyn 2nds v Mynydd Isa and Maeshafn; Pwllheli 2nds v Connah's Quay 2nds.

Division 4: Bersham 2nds v Carmel & District 2nds; Corwen v Marchwiel and Wrexham 2nds; Halkyn 2nds v Llanrwst 2nds; Hawarden Park 3rds v Llay 2nds; Llandudno 2nds v Dolgellau 2nds.