Cray Wanderers made it four games unbeaten in the Isthmian Premier and thirteen at home but had to be content with a point against Concord Rangers at Hayes Lane.

The point moved Cray up one place to 16th in table with 33 points while Concord who have five games in hand of the Wands are 20th on 18 points.

The Wands dominated most of the second half but fell behind to a close range header from Concord captain Ricky Modeste in the 66th minute. However, Cray got back on terms through Anthony Cook’s 77th minute penalty for his ninth goal of the season.  In an end to end finish to the game, Cray came close to winning late on through Gary Lockyer and Yahya Bamba but in the end the match finished in a draw.

Cray were looking to build on the positive of seven points in the last three games and there was one change to the starting lineup from Tuesday night’s 2-2 draw at Folkestone with Rhys Murrell-Williamson in for Yahya Bamba.  On the bench was Josh Hallard, on loan from AFC Wimbledon.  Rob Small’s Concord Rangers side were beaten 0-2 at home by Redbridge in the Essex Senior Cup on Tuesday and there were four changes with Simo Mbonkwi, Amine Sassi, Ricky Modeste and Jamal Allen for Khalon Haysman, Samson Bello, Billy Knott and Curis Ujah.

On a fairly mild afternoon the game got off to a bit of a lowkey start with Cray dominating possession but no real chances in the first fifteen minutes.

The Wands were the first to really threaten after 15 minutes when from a corner down the left from Frankie Raymond towards the far post was flicked on to David Ijaha who cut into the area and hit a shot to the near post which was pushed out well by Mason Terry.

For Concord, Max Hudson down the left put over a cross which had no takers in the box and then in the 22nd minute Hudson and Matas Skarna combined to set up Amine Sassi whose shot from the right of the held was held by Shaun Rowley.

For Cray, a free kick from Raymond down the right towards the far post was glanced across by Tom Bonner and was cleared and the excellent Emmanuel Kwatchey did well down the right to break into the area and sent over a good cross but went across goal.

The match began to get a bit more open after half an hour and Skarna saw a shot go through to Rowley while at the other end, Tom Beere found space and curled a shot over the top from outside the box.

In the 36th minute Ellis Brown made a surging run down the left and drove a shot fractionally wide of the right post.  Then, three minutes later, Raymond’s ball towards the area was headed on by Gary Lockyer for Alfie Evans to hit a shot which was claimed by Terry.

Before half time Concord almost took the lead. Firstly, from a quickly taken free kick from Hudson through to Skarna and his cross was glanced wide of the right post by Simo Mbonkwi.

Then Cray had a bit of a left off when Harrison Day down the right layed the ball across which caused havoc and the ball ricocheted off Kwatchey towards goal but Rowley did superbly to claw the ball away and prevent an own goal.

The second half began with Cray much more on top and making real inroads towards the Concord goal.

In the 50th minute from a free kick twenty five yards out to the right, Lockyer’s well struck shot was on target but Terry who had a great game in goal did well to turn the ball aside.

Then, down the left Raymond’s cross was headed wide of the left post by a diving Alfie Evans.  This was followed by Evans’ shot being pushed out by Terry with Kwatchey looking to convert but was flagged offside.

Ellis Brown was unlucky when down the left he curled in a shot which clipped the right post and with Josh Hallard and Anthony Cook introduced to the game, from a corner Lockyer hit a shot again parried by Terry.

Much against the run of play in the 66th minute Concord Rangers took the lead when down the left Hudson whipped in a terrific cross to the far post which was headed in by the experienced Ricky Modeste from close range.

This gave Concord a lift and Hudson from a corner down the right saw a cross-shot pushed out by Rowley.  For Cray, Yahya Bamba came on as the Wands looked to get a foothold back in the game.

In the 77th minute, Cray had the chance to level when a driven shot was handled in the area and also Cook seemed to get fouled by Joe Halsey and a penalty kick was awarded.  From the spot, Cook confidently stroked home into the bottom left for his ninth of the season.

Both teams didn’t seem content with a point and as the game entered its final stages Harrison Day shot wide from 20 yards for Concord Rangers.

Cray came closest to claiming the three points when in six minutes added on time, Rowley’s clearance was flicked on by Bamba for Lockyer who broke down the right of the area, went round Terry but with the angle narrowing shot into the side netting.

Then straight after, Bamba also showed pace to set up a shooting chance down the right and also hit the side netting.

In the end the match finished in a draw which was the least Cray deserved for their efforts especially in the second half but certainly a young Concord side showed enough character to suggest if they get a run going could give themselves a chance of safety.

The Wands moved up to 16th on 33 points and are ten points clear of 18th placed Cheshunt who Cray visit on Saturday and will be a tough test but Cray are playing with confidence and perhaps today perhaps came up against a goalkeeper in good form and didn’t have much luck in front of goal.  The Wands though still kept their home run going with a point and in a very good week for the club helps their hopes of remaining in the Isthmian Premier next season 

Cray Wanderers: Shaun Rowley, Emmanuel Kwatchey, David Ijaha, Tom Bonner, Sam Wood, Alfie Evans, Frankie Raymond, Tom Beere (Anthony Cook, 64), Ellis Brown (Josh Hallard, 62), Rhys Murrell-Williamson (Yahya Bamba, 73), Gary Lockyer:  Subs:  Cameron Black, George Brooke

Att:  238