A GOAL five minutes from time by Guisborough Town’s in-form recent signing Brian Close earned the Priorymen a valuable home point after an eventful 1-1 draw with Ashington at the KGV Stadium on Saturday.

It was an incident-packed game, in which visitors Ashington had a shopping list-long procession of players booked, and exploded in the 58th minute when Ashington defender Salmon was shown the red card.

Despite going down to 10 men, however, it was Ashington who took the lead in the 71st minute breakaway when Pearson scored to make it 0-1 to the visitors. But with time ticking away Guisborough defender Brian Close popped up with an important goal to square things up at 1-1 and that’s how it stayed to the end.

The game became very heated at times, particularly after the Ashington sending-off, and there was an unseemly brawl, involving both sets of players and backroom staff, who got very frustrated as things boiled over at times. One coach from each side were sent to the stands. The point keeps Guisborough well away from the relegation zone in 16th position with a reasonable haul of 21 points from 18 games.

Following the game, which drew a very healthy attendance of 250, former Middlesbrough midfielder Craig Hignett headed up an entertaining Q&A session in the evening as part of a special KGV Stadium event. Tomorrow Guisborough are at home in the league against Bishop Auckland (KO 3pm) when the Priorymen will be looking for their first league ‘double’ having beaten the Bishops 4-2 on their own turf earlier in the season.

Before the game Guisborough Town and Ashington players bowed their heads in respect to remember the Fallen Heroes of the two World Wars for a minute.