BRADFORD (Park Avenue) picked up a valuable point in the Northern Premier League Premier Division last night, but their long winless run goes on.

They found themselves 1-0 down at half-time, staring a third successive league defeat in the face.

But straight after the interval, Avenue equalised through Chinedu Osadebe.

Both sides had chances to win the game in a thrilling second half, but they had to settle for a point in the end.

The draw moved injury-hit Avenue a point clear of the drop zone, but they could fall into the dreaded bottom four depending on other results in the division tonight.

Jerome Greaves thought he had opened the scoring for Whitby after 18 minutes, but he was flagged offside from Priestley Griffiths’ free-kick.

Will Lancaster came agonisingly close for Avenue soon after, rattling the crossbar with a curling effort from outside the box.

Instead it was Whitby who took the lead 10 minutes before the break.

Flooding forward, the visitors pinned Avenue in their own box, and Alfie Doherty slipped in Junior Mondal, who fired the ball low beyond George Sykes-Kenworthy and into the net.

Harrison Hopper bent an effort just wide from distance in response, as Avenue attempted to claw their way back into the game, but he was then forced off injured.

Osadebe came on for him just before the break, and his impact was almost immediate.

Less than a minute into the second period, he won the ball in the opposition’s half, and fed Brad Dockerty, who got the ball stuck in his feet but still managed to find Lucas Odunston.

The full-back’s cross just evaded Jordan Preston, but Osadebe was there behind him to deflect the ball home.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Chinedu Osadebe had not been on the pitch for long when he equalised.Chinedu Osadebe had not been on the pitch for long when he equalised. (Image: John Rhodes.)

With their tails up, Avenue came agonisingly close to taking the lead a few minutes later, only for Whitby keeper Shane Bland to deny Preston with a magnificent double save.

At the other end, Connor Smith had a shot cleared off the line, before Griffiths had a back post header well saved by Sykes-Kenworthy.

Doherty bent an effort just wide for Whitby with five minutes to go, before Avenue almost won the game deep into injury-time.

Osadebe had a shot cleared off the line, before a throw-in fell to Will Longbottom, who was denied by Bland.

From the resulting corner, and virtually the last kick of the game, Luca Havern struck a shot just wide after the ball fell into his path.

Havern had come back into central defence for this encounter to replace Danny Benson, who joined Avenue on Saturday, coming in on loan from Barnsley until January.

After the draw with Whitby, Avenue boss Mark Bower reflected: “It was a great point really, as everything was against us tonight.

“Whitby’s game being called off at the weekend put them at a huge advantage, then we lost Ringo (Simon Richman) to injury in the warm-up.

“Harrison Hopper put his hand up and said he wanted play but he had to go off after taking a whack on the ankle that he was struggling with anyway.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Avenue will hope Harrison Hopper (left) recovers in time for Saturday's relegation six-pointer against Marske United.Avenue will hope Harrison Hopper (left) recovers in time for Saturday's relegation six-pointer against Marske United. (Image: John Rhodes.)

“I didn’t think there was much in the game in the first half, then we came out really well at the start of the second half and got level.

“We had lads on the pitch towards the end that ideally we’d have brought off, as they were struggling.

“Given we have a lot of young, inexperienced players, I thought the lads showed great character to see it through.”