Old Silhillians 1st XI 3 - 0 Cov & NW 1st XI
By Stephen Tabb
Confident start with new team
Old Silhillians 1st XI 3 (1) - (0) 0 Cov & NW 1st XI
Goalscorers: Frankie Levey (2); Lauren Hobday
Sils went into this match after a positive pre-season set of training sessions, welcoming back Clara Miles to the side, and seeing Caro Kappes and Sophie Williams in competitive action for the first time.
The side started in dominant fashion, adapting well to the new 3-4-3 formation, winning the ball high up the pitch and piling on the pressure in the opposition 23m. After a number of half-chances, mainly created through combinations with Ruth Dovey and Caro Kappes down the inside right channel, the Sils won their first PC, and this was saved well by the visiting keeper, but showed signs of promise for the home team's set piece routine. Moments later, and Sils had taken the lead - Frankie Levey smashing the ball home from a PC strike.
Lauren Hobday and Annabel Dalby then joined the match, rushing over from a school match, and whilst Annabel immediately got in on the action in midfield, Lauren got in a couple of great attacking positions, but then decided she wanted a 2 minute break and was green carded for knocking the ball away.
Half-time a few minutes later, brought a positive team-talk, discussing how to make the most of the opposition's tiring legs, and the fact that Coventry were panicking about how to cope with the threat through the middle of the pitch from Sils.
The second half pretty much then went to plan. Coventry did mount several attacks, as Sils tired a little, and also as a new team, left a few gaps. However, Jo Brett marshalled her defence well - with Hattie Evans and Lucy Connors looking very solid on the defensive flanks, winning the ball time and time again, whilst Clara Miles at Centre Back was calm and well organised - an incredibly mature performance from an 18 year old. Sophie Williams, in her competitive debut for the club, won tackles, worked hard, and helped supply quality ball into the midfield and forward line, allowing Sils to look much more dangerous in the second half than they had in the first.
The lead was doubled from another great strike from Frankie at a PC, and a third came along not long after, Caro finding Frankie at the top of the D, who then picked out Lauren to turn home from close range. There could have been goals, with Priya Majevadia going close, Lauren causing problems, and Annabel regularly turning the opposition into knots. The only slight blip in the second half was Caro picking up her first English card, in a comedy moment where she had to remind herself not to slide on a sand based astro, but forgot to tell her stick not to continue in the direction! In tighter games, the missed chances and the two green cards may play more of a part, but today, the team were comfortable enough with their clean sheet, and three good goals.
Player of the Match votes showed quite how well the team had come together as a unit, with 9 different players securing votes, but in the end Frankie (3) and Annabel (3) shared the honours.