EVESHAM United endured a frustrating night at the Jubilee Stadium on Tuesday when they were held to a 1-1 draw by a young and hardworking Slimbridge side in Southern League Division One South & West.
United had to come from behind to extend their unbeaten league run to five games thanks to Matt Sysum’s equaliser 15 minutes from time which cancelled out Paul Fahy’s 67th minute opener for the Swans.
The Robins could not make their late pressure count so their four-match winning streak came to an end as points were dropped in their play-off challenge.
Paul Collicutt’s side are ninth and seven points adrift of the top five heading into Saturday’s trip to second placed Tiverton Town, which is followed by the visit of Marlow on Tuesday.
The United boss named an unchanged starting 11 and it was United who assumed control for much of the first half but failed to turn a large chunk of possession into goals.
Carl Brown looked most threatening for the hosts early doors, firing just over after good work by Clayton Green down the flank, and then had a decent effort turned behind by debutant keeper George Burton.
The best chance of the half fell Brown’s way on the half hour mark when he should have buried Lance Smith’s cross, only to see Adam Mace clear off the Slimbridge goalline.
A number of half-chances fell United’s way before the interval but were not taken and half time arrived with the scoresheet blank.
It was a different story in the second half as the Red & Whites were well off the pace and allowed Slimbridge to come into the game.
The visitors grew in confidence and Kevin Sawyer needed to be alert to keep out Dean Turner and then Slimbridge leading scorer Fahy.
Collicutt reacted positively to the situation by introducing all three substitutes on the hour but the fresh legs made little impact and it was Slimbridge who got their noses in front thanks to Fahy who rifled in past the diving Sawyer in the 67th minute.
The visitors were content to sit on their one-goal advantage and continued to get bodies behind the ball but on 75 minutes United finally broke the stubborn Slimbridge resistance to draw level.
Substitute Liam Harding sent over a deep cross which found Sysum at the back post and the captain’s header was adjudged to have crossed the line by an assistant despite a valiant effort by Burton to keep the ball out.
Slimbridge shut up shop for the point and despite a succession of late corners the closest Evesham got to netting a late winner was when Sean Wood’s free kick beat Burton but landed on the roof of the stopper’s net.