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Wearside League: Silksworth CW boss relishes ‘massive’ Shipowners Cup semi-final away to Leam Rangers

Silksworth CW (red/white) battle in vain against Cleator Moor Celtic last weekend. Picture by Kevin Brady
Silksworth CW (red/white) battle in vain against Cleator Moor Celtic last weekend. Picture by Kevin Brady

Silksworth CW boss Andrew Stobbart is relishing the club’s biggest game of the season tomorrow.

But it will be a tough task away to Leam Rangers in the semi-final of the TWR Shipowners Charity Cup (2pm kick-off).

Stobbart said: “This will be a massive game which both sides will be preparing well for.

“The squad looks sharp and focused in training this week and we hope to take the positive performances in recent weeks, plus the work in training sessions into this game.

“We know Leam will be in confident mood and are in good form, so we will be in for a tough encounter.

“We are confident the players selected on the day will be well up for this one.”

Team wise, Silksworth CW miss forward Nathan Renton, who is on holiday, but they have two strikers returning – Paul Muir from a lengthy suspension and Stephen Moody after work commitments.

Late fitness tests may be required by David Stevens and Dan Thompson.

Leam have a semi-final for the third successive week, with a win and a defeat in the last two.

In the league, Sunderland West End welcome lowly Coxhoe Athletic to Ford Quarry (2pm) and are hot favourites to secure all three points.

Joint West End manager Anth Nelson said: “Danny Martin is looking to start at right-back and James Cassidy hopes to return after being cup-tied.

“Anthony Ross returns from injury and Graeme Pickering is looking to play in goal after some great performances in previous weeks.”

Nelson added: “We’ve had two wins against Coxhoe already this season, but they always give us a good game.

“These are the types of matches we need to win if we’re to stay in contention for promotion.”

Coxhoe secretary Paul Charlton said: “Jack Elcoat comes into play in goal. Philip Best and Callum Savage are both unavailable and our two new signings, Carl Brown and Raymond Wilson, will be coming into the squad.

“It’s a tough game against one of the top sides in the league.

“We’re trying to rebuild our squad after the last manager left, but we have a lot of young players.

“We’ll just go to Sunderland West End and do our best. Anything we can get on Saturday will be a bonus.”

Fourth-top Boldon CA are at home to Hartlepool and are hoping the weather holds, so players can gain some much-needed match fitness.

Boldon manager Paul Mossa said: “There is only so much you can do on the training pitch. Our goalkeeper, Alan Greenan, is out with an ankle injury, after slipping on snow.”

Mossa is trying to bring in a replacement in time for the game, while centre-back Jonny Gage is available to play, after been missing for work commitments last weekend.

Pool have Matty Gardner and Danny Maddison missing again – they expect to have the same squad that won at Darlington Reserves last week.

Central defender Craig Garthwaite has re-joined the club after spells at West Auckland, Darlington Reserves and Horden.

Jamie Tumilty’s 29th goal of the season last week made him the club’s leading goalscorer for a single season in the Wearside League, despite also missing a late penalty.

Harton and Westoe CW host Annfield Plain, with top scorer Dan Sirrell facing a late fitness test to establish whether he has recovered from a groin tweak.

Chris Foster misses out after picking up an ankle injury in last week’s defeat at Stokesley.

Andy Hill and Brodie Simpson continue to be sidelined, but manager David Crumbie can welcome back Ricky Brown and Harley Davison.

Crumbie said: “I was disappointed following the Stokesley game, as we had more than enough chances to win three games, never mind one.

“I am hoping the squad will show their character this week and bounce back in style.”

South Shields Reserves are just six points above the bottom three ahead of their visit to Richmond Town.

Richmond manager Jonathan Kellett has no fresh injuries to worry about.

Reece Allison and Sam Vernon continue with their recovery from long-term injuries and are not expected back anytime soon.

The only concern is the pitch at Earls Orchard. This scheduled fixture is the third of four successive home fixtures and, after the recent bad weather, they are hoping that the playing surface has time to recover.

Bottom club Prudhoe Town journey to Wolviston, with chairman Steve Pringle saying: “There will be no changes to the squad and we hope to bounce back after our recent defeat against Cleator Moor.”

Wolviston have Alex Maphosa making his debut, along with the return from suspension of defender Adam Johnston.

Work commitments continue to rule out central defenders Nathan Bonar and Mark Lilley.

Manager Steve Cook said: “After several weeks without a league game, we now have an opportunity to win the next two games against Prudhoe and Coxhoe and start to climb back up the table.”

At the top, second-top Cleator Moor Celtic, two points behind Hebburn Town Reserves with a game in hand, entertain Stokesley SC, who climbed out of the bottom three with last week’s 3-2 win over Harton and Westoe.

Third-placed Redcar Athletic welcome Windscale and recall Luke Woodall, Chris Bivens, Stuart Browne, Jordan Kirk and striker Jack Simpson for the game.

Anthony Jones, who has made an amazing recovery after surgery to repair a fractured cheekbone, is available too.

The Cumbrians only miss midfielder Darren Donald.