FRUSTRATING. That’s how Glenn Chambers would describe the first half of Pontblyddyn’s top-flight return.

The Alder Meadow outfit are hovering just above the Premier Division drop zone after losing their last six games.

But that only tells half of the story, Pontblyddyn finding themselves in position to win three of those matches - Brymbo, St Asaph and Menai Bridge - before slipping to narrow defeats.

And Chambers, who will miss tomorrow’s home clash with Northop, is hoping his side learn from their mistakes during the second half of the campaign.

“Frustrating is the word,” said Chambers when asked to sum up the first half of the season. “It’s been a bit of a mix in terms of results. We’ve played well in parts and really poorly in others while losing three games that we should have won.

“We shouldn’t be where we are in te table, but people haven’t played to their full potential yet.”

Chambers is joined on the sidelines by key bowler Rhys Jones tomorrow, but the captain remains confident that his team can collect a crucial win in his absence.

“Northop aren’t doing too badly,” said Chambers, pictured. “They had aspirations of a top two or three finish before the season and they are mid-table, so it proves that they are beatable.”

Northop head to their Flintshire rivals two places and 27 points better off, despite a 15-point penalty.

Team manager Dale Harley is encouraged by his side’s first half of the season.

He said: “I think we’re doing well. We’ve lost a couple of games where we could have done better, but we are going along quite nicely.”

And Northop added some silverware to their trophy cabinet in midweek by beating Brymbo in the Flintshire Knockout final.

“It’s always nice to pick up some silverware,” said Harley. “The lads played well and were delighted to win the competition.”

On the challenge of Pontblyddyn, Harley added: “They are under pressure near the bottom of the league, and it’s tight down there.

“If they beat us then they will close the gap on a few teams.”

One of those teams is Pwllheli, who are just 14 points better off than Pontblyddyn.

Pwllheli entertain Denbigh, who have seen their title challenge dealt a blow in recent weeks, while St Asaph play host to Llandudno.

Connah’s Quay will be hoping for a dramatic u-turn in results over the second part of the season.

The Flintshire side, who have visit Mochdre tomorrow, have just nine points from their opening 11 games of the campaign.

James Claybrook believes Brymbo can “drag themselves out” of the Premier Division drop zone.

Brymbo beat fellow strugglers Connah’s Quay by seven wickets to move to within two points of 10th placed Pontblyddyn with 11 games remaining.

And with an improvement in their batting, captain Claybrook is confident Brymbo can escape the threat of relegation.

“It’s been a tough first half of the season, but we believe we can improve in the second half and drag ourselves out of this situation,” said Claybrook.

“Our batting has been poor so far this season, Jayman aside, so if we can improve upon that I have no doubt we can reach a mid-table finish.”

Brymbo will have to get themselves out of trouble without the regular assistance of Greg King, who returned to action in the victory over Connah’s Quay.

Asked whether the wicket-keeper/batsman would be back to boost his side’s relegation dogfight, Claybrook conceded: “I was thankful for Greg helping us out last week, but sadly there won’t be a return for the rest of the season.”

After beating rock-bottom Quay, Brymbo not host leaders Bangor.

“Bangor’s going to be tough task as they sit top of the table so we know we have our work cut out,” added Claybrook.

“Not many will expect a result so we can play with freedom and see if we can cause an upset.”

Dave Blackwell unavailable for Brymbo.

Gresford, meanwhile, are targeting a top-five finish if they can piece together a winning run similar to that of last season.

The Wrexham-based outfit won eight of their final 10 games of the campaign, and captain Daniel Williams is looking to do something similar 12 months on.

“We’ve played some good cricket in the first half, and been unlucky not to pick up a few more points,” summed up Williams. “We are hoping to push into the top-five and get on a good run of wins, similar to this time last year.”

Gresford, who recorded a “massive” one-run win over Denbigh last week, host Menai Bridge tomorrow.

“We always look forward to playing Menai and testing ourselves against the best teams,” said Williams.

Other fixtures - Division One: Abergele v Mold; Bethesda v Dolgellau; Gwersyllt Park v Bersham; Hawarden Park v Ruthin; Llanrwst v Conwy; Llay Welfare v Carmel and District.

Division Two: Bangor 2nds v Mochdre 2nds; Buckley v Llay Welfare 2nds; Halkyn v Brymbo 2nds; Menai Bridge 2nds v Corwen; Mynydd Isa and Maeshafn v Gresford 2nds; Northop 2nds v Marchwiel and Wrexham.

Division Three: Carmel and District 2nds v Hawarden Park 2nds; Connah’s Quay 2nds v Pwllheli 2nds; Denbigh 2nds v Abergele 2nds; Mold 2nds v Gwersyllt Park 2nds.

Division Four: Dolgellau 2nds v Llanrwst 2nds; Llandudno 2nds v Ruthin 2nds; Marchwiel and Wrexham 2nds v Halkyn 2nds; Rhewl v Llangollen.