Otley Town 0 Ilkley Town 3

HOLDERS Ilkley Town are through to the next round of the Wharfedale District FA Cup after defeating Otley Town 3-0 in freezing conditions.

In a quiet first half, visitors Ilkley went closest to the breakthrough after Gareth Pickup broke through the Otley defence, but the centre midfielder stabbed the ball narrowly wide.

Against the flow Otley nearly took the lead on the stroke of half time. A penalty box collision between Ilkley keeper James Hirst and defender Darren Munday caused the ball to spill to the feet of Eric Arter who couldn’t react quick enough to convert.

Ilkley almost went ahead in the 53rd minute. Danny Bott’s free kick looked destined for the net, but was tipped wide by Otley keeper Fletcher Payley.

As weather conditions worsened, Ilkley finally took the lead after Payley spilled a low cross from Dan Chadwick and Danny Henderson was there to fire home from close range.

The visitors doubled their lead after 75th minute, Bott’s pass finding Jack Murray who coolly slotted the ball under Payley.

A second goal in two minutes followed. Richard Schofield cushioned the ball down to Adam Fowler, who drove it into the back of the net from six yards, rounding off a comfortable 3-0 victory for Ilkley, who are looking to win the trophy for the third consecutive season.

Speaking after the match, joint first team manager Greg Beswick said: “A convincing win but up to half time it was a well-contested game. They were set up to defend and were quite difficult to break through.

"The things we spoke about at half-time we really put into action and turned it on in the second half. We were a lot better.”

Looking forward to Ilkley’s next match at home against Carlton Athletic on Saturday, Beswick said: “It’s going to be a very tough game. I think they have played 11 games, scored 56 and only let 10 in and are unbeaten. You can tell I’ve done my homework.

"But we are going to prepare to make sure we are right and ready to go and we are always confident at home that we can pick up a result whether that be three points or a draw.”

Northern Plant Hire Trophy 1st Round

Skipton LMS 7 Ilkley Town Academy 1

CRAVEN League Division Three leaders Ilkley Town Academy were beaten 7-1 by Premier Division champions Skipton LMS.

The young Ilkley team battled well but were 4-1 down by half time, the Ilkley goal coming from Robbie Oldham. t