PILKINGTON were left frustrated, as a courageous, late fight-back saw Padiham rescue a near impossible point in a 2-2 draw, writes Liam McDermott.

The opening half saw very little between the two sides – with the first significant chance coming out of nothing.

However, Joel Melia of the hosts, saw his inventive piece of improvisation bend just wide of Jake Hilton’s goal.

And where Padiham couldn’t forge an opening with their maiden effort, Pilks could.

Freddy Garbutt, brought into the starting lineup with Chris Lomax and Adam Gilchrist absent, rewarded Stephen Palfrey’s faith – by rising highest to meet a free-kick and powering a header beyond the helpless Harry Moss.

 As was the case in Monday’s visit of Litherland REMYCA, Hilton was called into action – extending his leg to deny Joel Brownhill, from close-range.

Having been injured in the act of scoring, Garbutt was replaced at the break by Kane Hackett – who would have a positive impact, in terms of applying pressure to the Padiham defence.

Another player who so often makes a positive impact is Bruno.

However, having taken the ball around Moss, the midfielder appeared to be tripped by the goalkeeper – but any appeals for a spot kick fell on deaf ears.

Hackett also looked to extend the lead, when Taylor Prescott capitalised on a defensive error – but Moss did well to keep the forward at bay.

But when another defensive mishap occurred, Bruno ensured that he took advantage – to give the visitors a two-goal lead and surely all three points with 10 minutes remaining, right?

Well, that wouldn’t be the case. Brownhill, brother of Burnley’s Josh, managed to escape the attention of the Pilkington defence, before extending himself to tap home, with five minutes remaining.

And on the stroke of full time, a match that was in the palm of Pilks’ hand was dropped.

Some neat interplay up top saw Brownhill teed up and the forward didn’t hesitate to hammer beyond the despairing Hilton, to rescue a valuable point for the home side.

That extends Pilks’ unbeaten run to four matches, but having probably been satisfied with a point going into the match – they’ll most likely be disappointed that they didn’t collect all three.