IT'S always the curse of the cricket captain.

You get some good news and this usually gets cancelled out.

That's the case for Chirk skipper Luke Gardner ahead of another key weekend in the Shropshire League.

Leaders Chirk pay a visit to second-from-bottom Chelmarsh, with all-rounder Andrew Swarbrick returning to the side.

However, batting star Gareth Partridge is unavailable for the trip.

Chirk regained top spot in Division One with last weekend's key five wicket win over promotion rivals Bomere Heath.

On paper, the win looks a comfortable one, but that was far from the case.

"It was easily the best game of cricket I've been part of," said Gardner.

"It was feeling like at any point it could go either way.

"The result doesn't show it really well, but throughout the game we were neck-and-neck."

Chirk's confidence in chasing down any target they face came to the fore and they will be looking to continue in the same vein at a Chelmarsh side that's won only once this season.

"It's one of those games you look at it and think as long as we put in a solid performance, we're confident we can get the points," added Gardner.

"Andrew Swarbrick is back and that's a big, big plus for us."

Northop Hall, who slipped back into the Division One relegation zone with a disappointing defeat to Caldy, face another big Liverpool Competition weekend.

It's a return encounter with Caldy, who are just one place and seven points clear of the drop-zone.

Chester Boughton Hall are still looking at claiming this season's Cheshire County League crown and they visit Didsbury tomorrow.

As things stand, second-placed Hall trail leaders Hyde by 40 points.