South Shields have a slender one goal lead at half time over hosts Workington Reds courtesy of a penalty near the end of the half at Borough Park tonight.

Workington started the game without the services of skipper Gari Rowntree, Josh Calvert and Brad Hubbold, all missing through injury and illness, as they took on second placed South Shields, who were just as eager as the home side to earn points as they hunt for the league title.

But Reds had a bright start and were putting some pressure on their high flying visitors with good work from Scott Allison and Jordan Holt combining to get in a good cross looking for Jason Walker.

The forward looked to turn and get a shot in but he was closed down quickly and South Shields managed to get the ball away.

But South Shields were also quick on the counter and looked dangerous but Nathan Lowe's initial effort went safely into the arms of keeper Aaran Taylor.

Jason Walker won a free kick 25 yards out after he was brought down but Dave Symington's powerful effort just went wide of the mark.

Matty Douglas made a vital interception just in front of his own goal when Daly put a dangerous looking cross into a crowded box. It went out for a corner but in the end the final effort from Shields was wild and the ball went out of play.

Conor Tinnion looked to dance his way through the South Shields defence and turned to take a shot but again it was over the mark and after the first quarter the game remained goalless.

Shields won a corner as they looked to get the vital first goal and it was aimed for the tall figure of Ben Harmison, but the final touch off the head of Dillon Morse went over Taylor's bar.

Then at the other end of the field Tinnion floated in a free kick that was flicked on by Dan Wordsworth towards Sam Smith but he was closed down and the visitors cleared the danger.

But all Reds' hard work was took apart in the 41st minute when a Shields player went down in the area under a challenge from Wordsworth and the referee immediately pointed to the spot.

It was Briggs who stepped up to take on Taylor and he hammered it past him into the net to give South Shields a one goal advantage just before the break.