Cray Wanderers missed the opportunity to go top of the Bostik South after they were held at home by East Grinstead Town.  With Lewes drawing at Thamesmead the Wands with a win could have gone back to the top on goal difference but despite leading at half time were pegged back early in the second half and Cray couldn’t find a winner.

Cray took the lead with Michael Power’s 17th league goal of the season six minutes before half time.  East Grinstead though hit back four minutes after the restart when Oliver Boulding levelled with a sweet volley and despite late pressure Cray couldn’t retake the lead. 

Both sides had lost their last two games but it was East Grinstead Town who began the game confidently enough and had the first shooting chance when Alex Gaggins down the right let fly from 20 yards and shot over.

East Grinstead came close when Gaggins made a good run from midfield and teed up Will Hoare who shot narrowly wide from 15 yards.  It was the Wasps who continued to look the more threatening in the first 25 minutes and Cray gave the ball away close to the penalty area and Hoare was unlucky to see a well struck shot go just past the right post.

After this Cray began to get on top and East Grinstead keeper Dan Smith had to push away Junior Dadson’s cross shot and then Michael Freiter down the right of the penalty area fired into the side netting.   Then Freiter hit a free kick from 25 yards which went just wide of the right post.

The Wands went in front in the 39th minute when a long ball out from the back caught out the East Grinstead back line perhaps looking for an offside but Michael Power latched onto the pass and beat Sam Rolph to the ball and in a one on one from just inside the penalty area stroked the ball into the net even though Smith got a hand to the ball.

Cray led at half time but this probably came at the wrong time as Cray had to work hard to take the lead and were more comfortable going into the break.

Four minutes into the second half East Grinstead Town levelled.  A patient build up saw Hoare play in Karn Miller-Neave down the left who put over an excellent cross to the far post where right back Oliver Boulding despatched a crisp volley from six yards.

After this real chances for Cray were hard to come by and East Grinstead almost went in front but Charlie Postance was denied by a good save by Nick Blue with his feet.

It was half chances really for Cray with Ben Mundele and Matt Parsons shooting wide and then Dadson’s left wing cross found Freiter but couldn’t control his volley and went through to Smith.

Cray came close when Karl Dent’s corner to the far post found Lea Dawson but turned his shot on the turn wide and then saw a shot deflected over for a corner and then fired over as Cray exerted late pressure.

Despite this pressure it was East Grinstead who nearly stole the three points when Blue did well to push aside Steve Sargent’s strike. 

In the end a draw was about the right outcome and the Wands stay second two points behind Lewes and one point ahead of third placed Carshalton Athletic.  Cray are next in action on Saturday, 10th February at Ramsgate.

Cray Wanderers: Nick Blue, Ben Mundele, Matt Parsons, Jay Leader, Joe Vines, Lea Dawson (Capt.), Dean Carpenter, Michael Freiter (Karl Dent, 74), Michael Power (Charlie MacDonald, 80), Junior Dadson (Ralique Lawrence, 87), Brandon Scott: Subs: Zak Henry, Tiwa Fujamade

Att: 140