S & L CORBY 1 HOLBEACH UNITED 1: Rueful John Chand blasted his table-topping side after they threw away two vital UCL Premier Division points in suicidal fashion on Tuesday night.
The Tigers looked set to charge 18 points clear when substitute Andy Toyne rifled home a sensational 85th-minute strike at Occupation Road.
But a horrible mix-up between Adam Jackson and keeper Michael Emery gifted S & L Corby’s Paul Caswell an injury-time leveller.
Time will determine just how costly the dropped points will be in the title race, with St Ives Town and Spalding United both playing catch-up on the long-term leaders.
Tigers chief Chand told the Spalding Guardian that his side are still in command – but pulled no punches in his criticism of his players.
“It’s three errors rolled into one,” bemoaned the highly-rated boss. “First Jamie Stevens made a mess of the clearance, then Adam Jackson failed to deal with a long ball – and I’m not too sure why Michal Emery rushed out.
“To be honest, Jacko should deal with it – and I’ve let him know about it. If he puts the ball in row Z, we win. Fact.
“Before the game, I’d maybe have taken 0-0. But to concede a goal as poor as that leaves a bad taste. They had no intention of attacking and it made for a disjointed game.
“Andy Toyne came on and scored a screamer, it couldn’t have been any more top corner. He was great – perhaps the only player to take any credit.
“Is it a good point? I’m not sure. We could look back on it at the end of the season as a decent one, but if St Ives and Spalding win all of their games then maybe it’ll cost us. I’d still not swap our position for either of theirs.”
On a horrible night in Corby, Holbeach made all the running from the off.
Skipper Jamie Stevens had an early volley from a corner cleared off the line, while striker Ash Stevens twice spurned excellent chances when he failed to make decent contact with the ball.
Jason Turner also nodded a Jackson cross over before the break, as Holbeach searched for an elusive opener.
More of the same followed after the interval, with Jonny Allen glancing a header on to the top of the bar and sub Tommy Treacher heading wide seconds after coming on.
With time running out, Toyne looked to have snatched a massive three points when he blasted a left-footed drive into the top corner from just outside the box.
But Caswell’s opportunist effort put the skids on the Tigers’ celebrations – and breathed fresh life into the title race in the process.
Tigers: Emery, Allen, Jackson, Brown, J Stevens, Lewis, Flack (Maddox 81), Hughes (Toyne 46), A Stevens (Treacher 67), Turner, Griffiths. Not used: Overton, Elston.