Football: Harrogate Town 0-0 Gainsborough Trinity

Michael Woods in action for Harrogate Town
Michael Woods in action for Harrogate Town

Harrogate Town recorded their third clean sheet in a row but failed to strike a winning blow as they drew 0-0 to play-off rivals Gainsborough Trinity on Bank Holiday Monday.

But, despite only drawing, Simon Weaver’s men gained a valuable point on their promotion rivals as FC Halifax Town, Brackley Town and Altrincham all lost.

Weaver made three enforced changes to the team that beat Bishops Stortford as Michael Woods, Matt Bloomer and Luke Dean replaced Dominic Knowles (moved), Adam Bolder (suspended) and Alan White (working).

On a sandy surface at the CNG Stadium, the physical Trinity side started the better and winger Craig Nelthorpe forced Craig MacGillivray into a fine low save after 25 seconds.

Town grew into the game and after 20 minutes constant menace Colin Larkin found Dean in the box but the attacking midfielder’s shot was deflected wide.

Fellow midfielder Paul Bolland then thwarted another direct Trinity effort with a diving goal-line clearance as MacGillivray flapped at a free-kick.

Town winger Danny Forrest could have opened the scoring before the break but he sent a sublime bicycle kick attempt wide.

Chances continued to be sporadic after the restart as former Town player of the year Dominic Roma threatened MacGillivray’s goal with a deep cross.

Bloomer and Samuels then performed heroics keep Town’s sheet clean as the ball bobbled around the Town box.

A surging Dave Merris run ended with the ball flying high over the bar before Shane Killock nearly headed into his own net, only to be saved from embarrassment as the ball trickled wide.

Town clawed themselves back into the ascendency and substitute Chib Chilaka’s introduction caused the away side problems.

The forward missed a glorious opportunity from 15 yards out after turning on his left foot, but his shot edged narrowly wide.

Larkin then saw his left-footed strike saved by Trinity ‘keeper Jason White before man of the match Adam Nowakowski had a chance denied at the death by a lunching block.

It was billed as a six-pointer but both sides left with just one.

It leaves Town three points outside the play-off zone in sixth with two games in hand on fifth-placed Altrincham.

Elsewhere, Harrogate Railway shocked Farsley Celtic away 3-2 thanks to goals from Nathan Cartman, Joe McCann and Paddy McGuire (pen).