Sheffield Bankers returned to action after a week off. Manager Andy Taylor had a depleted squad with Scott Dinnigan, Phil Miskell, Mikey Russell, Chris Tunstall, Sam Dean, Miles Ridall and Aaron Watts all being unavailable.
Bankers promoted Christan Fisher and Sami Eric up from the reserves and thrust them straight into the starting line-up, new signing Jack Sutton was also included on the bench.
Taylor once again deputized in goal, the familiar back four of Jerrison, Balmer, Robinson and Joyce lined up in front of him. The midfield was made up of Pistis, Fisher and Kokot. Rob Jerrison returned and was supported by Colton and Eric.
The Bankers started brightly and moved the ball well across the back, Fishers energy complemented the intelligent Pistis and Kokot was linking play well with the forwards. The Bankers were playing with confidence, quick flowing interplay led to a fine cross field ball by Colton to Eric. Eric excellently found Rob Jerrison in the box who fired into the roof of the net with his left foot.
As the game developed the Bankers became inpatient and started playing longer balls forward, mainly due to Silkstone's reluctant to attack. They opted to contain and look to hit the Bankers on the counter. The Bankers dominated the 1st half without creating any clear cut chances.
Half Time (Bankers 1 - 0 Silkstone)
The team talk at half time was to move the ball quicker and shorten the play. The Bankers wanted to get Eric and Colton closer to Jerrison to try and create better openings.
The second half started very much the same, Bankers dominating possession without making any clear chances, however a change in tactics from Silkstone started to worry the Bankers back line. Silkstone played the ball quicker up the pitch to try and turn the Bankers back line. This then resulted in the equalizer, Bankers gave a free kick away in Silkstones half which was hammered down the pitch. Jerrison did well to win the initial header, but the loose ball feel at the feet of the Silkstone forward who quickly slotted neatly home from the edge of the box.
The goal didn’t effect the overall feel of the game, Bankers continued to dominate with Taylor spraying the ball out from the back. Full backs Joyce and Robinson supported play well and Balmer and Jerrison remained solid centrally. It was Balmer who had the next chance, a corner for the Bankers found Balmer who headed against the bar.
The introductions of Sutton, McCormick and Steer were made to reignite the Bankers push for a winner. Rob Jerrison worked very hard as ever and deserved his 1st goal of the season. Eric back in the fold started very well but fizzled out of the game along with Colton, both are still searching for full match fitness.
The Bankers looked the most likely to score however Silkstone offered a reminder every so often with a few swift counter attacks that lead to the Bankers defending corners.
The next clear opportunity feel to the Bankers when Steer produced a moment of magic to get away from his man and whipped in a delightful ball right across the goal, unfortunately no Banker was there to apply the final touch.
The game ended with a few speculative efforts on goal from Kokot and Pistis and 1-1 was the final result.
With 7 players missing it could be seen as a point well gained, but after a solid performance it felt as two points dropped.
The performance underlies the strength and depth this squad has, the Bankers now head to title chasing Oughtibridge in what will be the biggest test of the season.
Andy Taylor – 7
Jo Robinson – 7
Joe Jerrison – 7
Tez Balmer – 8
Jack Joyce – 7
Mauro Pistos – 9
Christian Fisher – 7
Sami Eric – 7
Alex Colton – 7
Rob Jerrison – 7
Mark Kokot – 7
Tom McCormick – 7
James Steer – 7
Jack Sutton – 7
Man of the Match – Mauro Pistis, played through the pain barrier and produced an assured, intelligent performance.