WASPS are in almost exactly the same position they were in this time a year ago, but they are in a totally different place.

Like last year, the black and golds enter the second half of the season in the hunt for a top six finish in the Aviva Premiership and with a home quarter-final in the Amlin Challenge Cup to look forward to.

But while they lost the cup game to Leinster and hardly won another league match last season, Dai Young believes his squad is better equipped this time around to carry the fight further.

He said: “We’ve done it in a better way this year.

“We’ve creeped up while last year we had a real purple patch to get up there.

“But I didn’t feel we were anywhere near able to sustain that and the proof was in the pudding towards the end of th season.

“I think we’re more capable now of sustaining our performances.

“I still don’t think we’re a top four or five team, but I think we’ll be there or thereabouts and can push hard for that sixth spot.

“We weren’t good enough last year to do that, but we’ve learnt as a management and you’d like to think the players have.

“You can’t take anything for granted. The league is really tight and two or three wins rockets you up there and two or three losses drops you like a stone.

“But I think everyone is a bit more realistic about where we actually are than perhaps they were last season.”