Defences were on top as Tuffley Rovers and Fairford Town played out a 1-1 draw at Gleum Park, on Saturday afternoon.

Karnell Chambers’ 9th minute penalty put the hosts ahead, before former Rovers winger Joe Shutt levelled midway through the first half.

After going into the break all square, both sides struggled to test the opposition keeper and despite Chambers being sent for an early bath following a second yellow, the score remained locked for the final 10 minutes.

The result sees Fairford stay in the play-off places, but with the pack only two points behind and having played five games less, their play-off hopes are all but over.

Jamie Reid’s side only have one game left of their 2023/24 season and will require a number of sides having a disaster of a final month of the season.

For Tuffley, they remain in 14th place ahead of their final two games of what has been a promising campaign.

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The game started with Tuffley the quicker of the two to settle, with Jake White’s free kick falling to Josh Radford, who fired wide on 2 minutes.

Connor Walters managed to create space on the left side of the box, but fired wide – as the hosts pressed for an opener.

They got it two minutes later, when Tristan Haswell was penalised for a trip in the box on Radford and Chambers stepped up to make it 1-0.

Tuffley had a glorious chance to go two goals to the good on 19 minutes, but Chambers waited half a second too long and was caught out with a bobble.

Jamal Lawrence had Fairford’s first chance, but after shrugging off Mark Pritchett, was denied by a big Billy Thomas block.

But the visitors would level on half an hour, when a ball in from the left bounced in the box and Joe Shutt rifled home from close range.

Tuffley had strong shouts for a second penalty ignored, with Neil Mustoe furious that his side weren’t awarded another spotkick after Radford appeared to be brought down by Ben Mitchell as he rounded the Fairford keeper.

Neither side were able to test the other keeper in the second half, with Josh Radford blasting the best chance over with ten minutes to go, after he was picked out by substitute Tyrel Roberts’ cross.

Karnell Chambers was given his marching orders for a second yellow card with seven minutes of normal time remaining, but Tuffley stood firm and held off a Fairford attack that lacked the killer quality in the final third.

Next up for Tuffley is a home fixture against Hereford Lads Club on Good Friday, whilst Fairford end their season next Saturday at home to Thornbury Town.

Tuffley Rovers: Thomas, Mann, Clifford, Pritchett, Joel White, Smith, Jake White, Alder, Chambers, Walters, Radford

Subs: Herbert, Bevan, Fallows, Lander, Roberts

Fairford Town: Mitchell, Thomson, Haswell, Way, Davidson, Wilkie, Shutt, McSharry, Lawrence, McCrae, Lodge

Subs: Taylor, Edwards, Romer, Blacker, Starr

C Martin Roofing Man of the Match – Joel White (Tuffley Rovers) & Will Davidson (Fairford Town)

READ MORE: Check out the full list of results in and around Gloucestershire from Saturday right here

Cover photo taken and with copyright by Pete Kinsella. For more great photos follow Pete on Twitter @PeteKinsella69

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