LATE goals failed to unlock the stalemate of a tight local derby between LINBY COLLIERY WELFARE and HUCKNALL ROLLS LEISURE in the Notts Senior League’s Senior Division.
With neither side enjoying the most fruitful of form at present, the match yielded few chances for a healthy-sized crowd of about 170 at Church Lane.
And although the excitement factor increased considerably in the final ten minutes, it merely turned what looked certain to be a goalless draw into a 1-1 draw.
One-time leaders Linby — desperate to end a poor run of just seven points from their last eight league games — set their stall out from the off to make sure they weren’t beaten.
And an improved showing looked ready to result in victory when they took the lead in the 80th minute. Simon Marlow was brought down by Ian Paterson for a clear penalty and although the Linby man’s kick was blasted against the bar, older brother and joint player/manager Dave Marlow was given time to latch on to the rebound and slot in the bottom corner.
Rattled Rolls might be struggling to make an impact this season. But at least they never know when they’re beaten and they fashioned an 88th minute equaliser to force their ninth draw in 15 league outings this term. Prolific marksman Andy Start, who began the game on the substitutes’ bench, was the architect, getting beyond his man down the left and supplying a peach of a cross that was slammed home at the far post by Kyle McDermott.
There were few complaints from either camp afterwards about the outcome. A draw was about right after a scrappy match on a bobbly pitch.
Rolls probably shaded possession but Linby looked much more solid than in recent games, with new signing Scott McNeill enjoying an outstanding debut at centre-half.
Before the goals, the best opening fell in the 72nd minute when Linby’s man-of-the-match Matt Murphy tricked and teased his way to the byline and cut the ball back for Ash Winfield, who scuffed his shot.
Rolls, whose starman by a country mile was flawless left-back Adam Tolley, missed a similar opening in the first half when Duncan Osbourne fluffed his shot from a McDermott cross.
LINE-UP — LINBY (4-4-2): Miles/ Woodward, McNeill, Jago, Coupe/ Marlow D., Marlow S., Winfield, Dakers/ Mann, Murphy. Subs: Martin (for Dakers 60), Hodgson (for Coupe 88), Clowes, Falconer.
ROLLS (4-4-2): Rollson/ Niblett, Buckley, Short, Tolley/ Solomon, Paterson I., Brooks, Osbourne/ Wallis, McDermott. Subs: Murray (for Brooks 67), Start A. (for Osbourne 67), Thomas (for Niblett 80).