Old Silhillians 1 - 1 Leamington C
By Stephen Tabb
Superb effort to start the Summer
Old Silhillians 1 (0) - (1) 1 Leamington C
Goalscorer: Sarah Crane
Sils went into this first Summer game full of optimism, but lacking a Goalkeeper. However, there was still plenty of running in this team, and the exciting prospect of welcoming 12 year old Imogen Pemble into the team to play her first senior ladies match, as well as the opportunity for the continuing development of a number of the Ladies 2nd XI.
Leamington have 4 sides in the Summer League, and their strength in depth is very evident when looking at their teams, and it was not a surprise that much of the early pressure was by the Leamington side, and whilst Sils defended well early on, they did soon go behind after Maria O'Malley turned in a speculative cross-short into the goal, and the lack of a goalkeeper looked as if it may cause issues.
However, the fast and skillful Sils side started taking the game to Leamington, and started causing problems of their own. Strong running by Pemble, along with excellent attacking work by Amy Garside, Priya Majevadia and Lorna Brooks Scott led to several half-chances and the Leamington having to scramble the ball away on occasions.
At the other end, Maria O'Malley, Hattie Evans and Sophie Williams will getting to drips with not having a Goalkeeper behind them, and whilst there were some slightly nervous moments, Leamington did not get too close to scoring a second.
Sils had a good start to the second half, and Sarah Crane found herself in the right position to turn home from the penalty spot as the Leamington keeper was unsighted following a good piece of play down the right by Laura Porter and Amy Garside.
However, having equalised, Sils then spent much of the game defending - with O'Malley and Evans in particular being excellent, with Maria using her "game understanding" picked up from Tyler's football sessions on the one occasion she was caught out, as the forward in the clear then found herself on the floor...
Sils were restricted to occasional breaks with Izzy Gardner and our other debutant Claire Wright finding space at times to release Katie Seazell and Frankie Levey, but in all honesty, when the final whistle went, Sils were definitely the happier of the two teams with the draw.
A positive start to the Summer League, and lots to build on for future matches - hopefully all the opposition will be as nice to play against as Leamington were.