DEEPING RANGERS 2 YAXLEY 2: Stacy Cartwright’s 85th-minute effort denied ten-man Yaxley an unlikely Outgang Road victory on Saturday.
All looked to be going to plan for Rangers when Scott Ginty gave them a tenth-minute lead in the clash between two of the UCL Premier Division’s top five teams.
Ex-Holbeach ace Rob Hughes levelled for the Cuckoos on 21 minutes, but the visitors then had veteran Ricky Hailstone sent off bang on half-time.
However, midfielder Hughes notched again on 47 minutes – this time from the penalty spot – to stun Rangers.
That’s how it stayed up until the final five minutes, when defender Cartwright struck.
Matt Heron then had a chance to win it, but Matt Holland cleared his last-gasp effort off the line.
The draw leaves Deeping four points behind second-placed AFC Rushden and Diamonds ahead of their clash at the Dog and Duck tonight (7.45pm).
Rangers chief Tuncay Korkmaz said: “We never really got going, even against 11. We could have nicked it at the end with a few late chances, but overall a draw was fair.
“They worked as hard as any team I’ve seen this year and had chances to finish us.
“We are missing a few players and I felt we lacked a bit of power in midfield.”
Deeping hoped to tie up deals for Yaxley’s Jamie Graham and Grantham’s Callum Smith ahead of the Diamonds duel.
Deeping: Doughty, Tinkler, Braithwaite, Ashton, Cartwright, Burton-Jones, Flack, Ginty, Oliver (Bogusz), Heron, Beck.