Lichfield City FC slipped to third after grinding out a point against fourth-placed Atherstone Town.
Although the result sees them fall four points adrift of leaders Heather St Johns, Jamie Hawkins’ side will be relieved to have come away with anything after playing for a chunk of the second half with ten men.
A cagey opening period saw little in the way of chances as the two teams sized each other up.
But any hope of Lichfield throwing off the shackles in the second half were dealt a blow when Josh Mansell was sent off for a second bookable offence.
Keeper Adam Jenkins made a smart save to ensure City kept Atherstone at bay.
Despite the extra man, the visitors were unable to make their numerical advantage pay as Lichfield came away with a hard-fought point.