Saturday 18th August 2001
Northern Premier League Premier Division
Hyde United: Richard Acton, John Foster, Matty Taylor, Stuart Taylor, Paul Ashwell, Peter Band, Josh Howard (Neil Hall), Nehru McKenzie, Simon Yeo, Steve Foster (Lee Matthews), Neil Critchley (Gareth Rowe)
Bishop Auckland: David Campbell, Brian Rowe, Anthony Lee, David Gallacher, Mark Salmon, David Kitchen, Steven Bell, Jason Ainsley, Andrew Shaw, Carl Chillingsworth, Mark Foster. Subs: Lee Ellison, Steven West for Bell, David Bayles for Gallacher
Bishop Auckland showed just why they finished in 3rdplace last season with a very professional opening day victory at Ewen Fields. Hyde boss Mike McKenzie gave debuts to seven members of his squad as the Tigers youthful side struggled to combat the strength and experience of the Bishops. Indeed after just 3 minutes Hyde were let off when Carl Chillingsworth got behind the defence but pulled his shot across goal. Josh Howard went close for Hyde on 7 minutes when he cut inside from the right and shot just over from the edge of the area. Bishop Auckland got more on top as the half progressed and a couple of long range efforts from Jason Ainsley flashed past Richard Acton'spost. The Durham side went ahead on the half hour when Andrew Shaw headed home from a free kick after Mark Foster had been fouled. Three minutes after the break it was Foster who found himself in acres of space on the left and he easily planted the ball past Acton and into the corner for the second. Hyde came into life after that and the normally prolific Simon Yeo had two chances in a minutes, firstly Mark Salmon blocked his goalbound shot and then he beat David Campbell in the Bishop goal only to see his effort clip the post. On 55minutes Carl Chillingsworth raced away from the Hyde defence and beat Richard Acton with a smart chip leaving the Hyde goalkeeper completely stranded as theball hit the back of the net. A minute later Yeo got through again but Campbell made an excellent save to deny the striker. Hyde scored a deserved consolation goal on 76 minutes when Matty Taylor's cross eluded everyone in the penalty area and crept in at the far post. There was still time for Campbell to thwart Lee Matthews but Bishops were always good for the points as they look to improve on last seasons third place.