Charnock Richard 0

Silsden 2

GOALS from Aidan Kirby and Dan Illingworth ensured Silsden second place in the Hallmark Security League Premier Division was maintained against third-placed Charnock Richard on Monday.

Danny Forrest, having seen his casualty list grow, with Arley Barnes and Niall Sultan injured in the bruising Winsford game, has signed the experienced Jack Turnbull from Chadderton and goalkeeper Jake Green as a replacement for keeper Callum Jakovlevs who, after losing his place to Sammy Lee, has joined Prestwich Heys.

Fortunately for the Yorkshiremen, Josh Kaine and Kirby returned and Reece Lyndon was moved into midfield. Mark Everingham made his first start after injuring himself in a pre-season game.

The game flowed from one end to the other with the home side having the initiative early on. Reece Kendall broke up the first attack before a fierce drive from Joe Noblet rebounded off Lee’s chest. Illingworth headed a dangerous cross clear before Kaine broke up another swift attack.

Silsden’s first clear opening resulted from Luke Rhodes heading down to Kirby who slid the ball to Will Storrie. Storrie’s left-footer lacked venom.

Mark Woods then hit a free-kick from 40 yards out, which tested Lee. Keeper Chris Cheetham saved Hancock’s free-kick after Storrie had been fouled. A deep cross from Danny Regan caught out Craig Bentham but Kaine was there in a flash to clear the danger.

At the other end, Kendall’s free-kick was met by Illingworth but Cheetham pushed the header wide. Charnock had their first clear chance on 30 minutes. Kirby was beaten in the air and Rhodes lost possession. Skipper Carl Grimshaw shot wide.

With Lyndon in midfield, Silsden had a much better shape than they had against Winsford and they took the lead 10 minutes before the break with a simple goal. Will Storrie broke down the right and crossed from the byline. Kirby burst to the near post and guided it home before any defenders could react.

Kirby then fed Mark Everingham but he was closed down before a poor header from Illingworth gave Charnock a chance. Kaine had already read the situation and snuffed out any danger.

Just before the break, Charnock lost Spencer Bibby, who had already replaced Ashley Young. In the dying minutes Storrie went close before Dan Regan wasted an opportunity to level the scores.

Despite the slender lead, Silsden looked in control. Lyndon won a ball and fed Kirby, who saw his effort deflected for a corner. Grimshaw’s next effort was easy for Lee. Everingham and Storrie set up Kirby but the striker couldn’t get a clean contact on the ball. Storrie shot wide.

The first sign of any danger to the Cobbydalers was in the 60th minute, when the Silsden penalty area resembled a pinball machine. The ball was eventually cleared. A free-kick from Alex Ralph found Grimshaw but his header cleared the bar.

Charnock finally began to gain some control but Lee saved the few shots that resulted before Illingworth headed Hancock’s free-kick onto the post on 70 minutes.

Five minutes later, a Hancock corner was headed home by Illingworth. Kendall hit a shot over the bar after another perceptive ball from Hancock.

The Lancastrians gambled, pushing players forwards. They put pressure on the Silsden defence. Bentham made two clearances and Regan had a shot deflected for a corner. Grimshaw had two more chances. He fired the first over the bar before Lyndon’s intervention preventing him netting in the dying minutes.