LOCAL rivals Chorley completed a UniBond first division double over Rossendale thanks to an early strike from Lee Wilkinson.

The goal, after just four minutes, was as simple as they come, the big striker flicking a header in at the near post from a long throw-in.

Dale had brought in Paul Howarth and Brad Pates in an attempt to freshen things up in midfield, but despite both players putting in good, hard-working, performances there was still a lack of creativity from the midfield department, especially from wide areas.

Despite the early goal, the first half was very poor and both sides were reduced to long range efforts as defences were well on top.

Mark Andrews did well to tip Wilkinson's shot onto a post, while Howarth had a shot blocked and Chris Fitzsimmons brought a scrambling save from Mark Molyneaux in the Chorley goal.

Right on half time the visitors could have doubled their lead, but Andrews saved well with his feet as David Eatock was put clean through.

The introduction of Craig Sargeson gave Dale a boost, and his clever interplay with Gary Williams began to cause the Chorley defence problems.

Stand-in striker Chris Brooks had three attempts on goal, Molyneaux reacting well to his near post volley, with two others being deflected just wide.

The Dale defence protected Andrews well in the second half as the keeper was struggling after a nasty challenge just before half time.

The visitors were reduced to long range efforts which were easily dealt with, Patterson having the best.

Wilkinson almost doubled the lead near the end, sending a back post header wide, but a single goal always looked like being enough for the visitors to take the three points back home with them.