With the team setting up in a new formation to recent weeks, the first 10 minutes became a bedding in period. The game was a bit frantic, with Bankers not getting control of the game early on and Silkstone looking the more dangerous overall. Silkstone managed to grab an early goal when a quick free kick was taken to lay one of their strikers through on goal and slot it into the far post.
After the goal, the game began to slow down a little bit, with Bankers starting to enjoy more possession and composure on the ball. Fan favourite Robert Jerrison held the ball up well for his team and allowed others to try support him. With the diamond formation there was a reliance on Bankers’ full backs to get forward also, and Jo Robinson showed intent by making a few good runs early on to support Daniel Beech.
Bankers were able to pull a goal back in an unlikely fashion. Chris Tunstall played a through ball to Robert Jerrison, who tricked everyone around him by stumbling the ball into the net with his left foot. 1-1.
Shortly after Phil Miskell had an attempt at goal with a dipping free kick narrowly missing the target. Silkstone’s keeper was forced into making two smart saves within a minute of each other; the first blocking a shot from inside the six yard box and another from a long range effort that looked to be heading into the top corner.
Bankers looked to be growing in confidence. Miskell and Lodge started to get on the ball more and more, playing a few cross field balls to good effect. Mauro Pistis, sitting at the anchor of the midfield, was guarding his defence with honour. And honour was at the forefront of his mind when he demanded an apology from Silkstone’s player after a collision.
Bankers took the lead following some quick thinking between Beech and Miskell. A free kick was awarded around 30 yards out, with Silkstone’s defence still moving backwards, Miskell tapped the ball in front and this allowed Beech to carry the ball a few steps and drill the ball low into the bottom corner. Great goal, 2-1.
Bankers added a third before half time through a brilliant team goal. A cross field ball was played to the left hand side, the ball then came into Chris Tunstall in the area, who laid it back out after he couldn’t turn to face the goal; the ball found its way to Phil Miskell towards the right hand side of the area, he dinked the ball across the goal and Chris Tunstall met it to head into the corner of the net. Probably as good a team goal you will have seen since Jack Wilshere’s goal when Arsenal played Norwich – it was probably even better than that too.
Half time arrived with the score at 3-1 to Bankers.
Bankers continued their attacking threat in the second half. Daniel Beech was heavily involved in many attacks and Chris Tunstall was able to push forward to support the strikers. However, Silkstone were also looking dangerous going forward and were not looking to go down without a fight. Bankers’ keeper Scott Dinnigan had to pull off a string of top notch and important saves during the second half. The first one came when Silkstone’s player struck low through a field of players towards the near post. Dinnigan only had a second to react as he saw the ball late, but he got down superbly to block the shot and keep hold of the ball to stop it from bouncing back into play.
Around the hour mark Sam Dean replaced Mauro Pistis. Dean’s impact was almost immediate as his first action was to run through on goal, but the keeper saved his shot.
It was Silkstone that scored the next goal as the ref awarded them a penalty for handball. The penalty taker slotted the ball in the bottom corner of the net. 3-2.
Despite conceding, Bankers did not panic and they were able to restore the two goal cushion with around 20 minutes to go, with Daniel Beech grabbing his second goal of the game. The ball was played to Beech towards the left side; he ran the ball towards the touchline inside the area looking for an opportunity to cross. What he saw instead was the keeper off his front post and he drilled the ball low into the net. 4-2.
Not long after Beech had another effort on goal as he cut in from the right hand side and looked to curl the ball to the far post; but the shot was blocked.
With around 12 minutes left, Joe Lodge was replaced by Matt Taylor in midfield and a few minutes later James Nield-Smith replaced Robert Jerrison.
The closing stages saw Silkstone throw more men forward, but this also allowed Bankers to go on the counter attack. Matt Taylor had a chance when the ball came across the area, he took a touch and looked to curl the ball to the far post but the shot was blocked. Robert Jerrison also created an opportunity for himself to grab another goal just before being replaced after superbly turning his marker and striking the ball against the crossbar.
Beech also had another couple of strikes at goal, looking for that hat-trick. Although he wouldn’t have been able to take the match ball away with him as the brand new one acquired for the game got lost in the river; much to the frustration of Bankers’ gaffer/ball boy Ryan Griffiths.
Silkstone on two occasions thought they had pulled a goal back but were thwarted by a man of the match performance from keeper Scott Dinnigan. The pick of the saves came late on when a dipping ball looked to be goal bound, but Dinnigan leapt up and managed to parry the ball away, despite the ball being slightly behind him. As well as his saves, Scott’s all round commandment of his area was superb throughout the game as he won pretty much every aerial battle he went up for.
The full-time whistle came and Bankers’ decent league form continues. Another big challenge follows as next week sees Bankers travel to league leaders Denaby United. Look out for their match programme on the day; it will end up being a collector’s item for sure.
Manager’s Man of the Match: Scott ‘Big D’ Dinnigan