Deeping Rangers produced a resilient display to pocket a useful point from their Tuesday night trip to Boston Town in the United Counties League Premier Division.
The visitors had to produce a dogged defensive display against a rejuvenated Poachers side and ensure a decent seven point return from their opening four league games.
It needed three goalline clearances to keep an industrious and robust Boston side at bay while home goalkeeper James Lambley produced a couple of excellent saves to deny Deeping any chance of victory.
With regular number one Richard Stainsby ruled out, Rangers brought in the experienced Danny Bircham from their coaching team to play in goal.
And Bircham - who was part of Rangers’ last title winning team - produced an assured display against a Boston side who bombarded the visiting goal with a series of long throws and corners.
Bircham safely gathered an early effort from home frontman Jordan Nuttell before Dan Flack produced the first of Deeping’s goalline clearances.
The full-back was in the right place at the right time to clear away Ben Davison’s effort after the Boston midfielder had weaved a decent opening.
Deeping then responded by creating their best opening of the first period as a flowing move saw Charlie Coulson race clear only to blaze over the home crossbar.
Dan Schiavi then brought out the best in Lambley as the home goalkeeper produced an athletic dive to turn away the Deeping’s man goalbound free-kick which looked destined for the corner of the Boston net.
Lambley again did well at the start of the second half as he made a smart block to deny Deeping skipper David Burton-Jones’ low shot after his mazy run into the box.
Deeping then lost the services of influential centre-back Jonny Clay who, along with Charlie Ward, had coped well with Boston’s considerable aerial threat.
Luke Hunnings stepped into breach admirably as Boston made the most of the late running.
Flack cleared off the line again to deny Davison while Bircham had to be alert to smartly gather a deflected effort.
Boston’s final opening saw striker Will Britton fire goalwards, but this time it was Coulson who was on hand to block on the line and thwart the Poachers as the game finished goalless.
Deeping now turn their attentions to the FA Cup this weekend when they visit Midland League Division One side Brocton in the first qualifying round.
Rangers: Bircham, Flack, Smith, Burton-Jones, Ward, Clay, Avis, Coulson, Mooney, Coupland, Schiavi. Subs used: Hunnings. Not used: Simpson, Barrand, Marsden.