Clydebank took a step closer to securing top flight safety with an invaluable 1-0 win away to Benburb on Saturday.

Only Bens defender Andy Wright’s calamitous first-half own goal separated the sides, with Bankies now rising up to eighth in the West Region Premiership.

The victory takes them 10 points clear of Benburb, who sit just a point clear of Troon in the third and final relegation spot.

Manager Gordon Moffat made three changes to the side that lost last weekend, with Jamie Darroch, Craig Holmes and Kyle Munro all returning to the starting lineup, while striker Aaron Millar started after a lengthy spell on the sidelines.

It took just four minutes for the only goal of the game to arrive, and it did in bizarre circumstances.

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Nicky Little and Millar combined well down the left channel, with the former whipping the ball in from the left. Veteran defender Wright couldn’t adjust his positioning in time as he inexplicably passed the ball into his own net and beyond the reach of despairing Bens goalkeeper Ross Connelly.

The visitors clearly took heart from the early opener and could have put the game beyond doubt, but spurned several good chances from three corner kicks in quick succession.

First, Matt McLean benefitted from a poor clearance, but the defender failed to make clean contact with the ball as his shot on the turn was easily gathered. Alan Vezza then went close from another corner, forcing a good stop from Connelly with his firm header.

Connelly was again alert at the third time of asking after a stramash inside the area, with Bankies unable to extend their advantage.

While Moffat’s men kept up the pressure, it was Benburb who had the most clear cut chance of the first-half.

The Bankies back-line allowed a cross from the right to bounce, which, in turn, allowed Gary Fisher the chance to drag his effort wide of the target in what was a major let off.

Experienced striker James Marks was next to come close for Bens in the second-half, but his headed effort was well off target.

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Millar - returning to the side for the first time in four months - created the best chance of the second-half when he crossed for Holmes at the far post, but the recent signing skewed his acrobatic effort over the bar.

As the clock ticked down, Benburb missed one final opportunity to snatch a late point. As the ball worked its way down the right flank, Kieran Mulcahy’s shot was well saved by Marc Waters.

Right at the death, Little had the chance to add to his already impressive tally for the season when he capitalised on a slack pass out from the back, but his shot was weak as Clydebank held on for a win with a clean sheet in the league for the first time since October last year.

Next up for Clydebank is the visit of Beith to Holm Park. Kick-off this Saturday is 2pm.

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