The Harriers lost further ground in the play-offs today when they could only manage a scoreless draw at struggling Eastbourne, a side that found themselves slammed 6-0 by Stevenage on Tuesday. We were hoping to go some way towards matching that score line but by the end of the game we had come nowhere near it.
Now we find ourselves probably too far away from those play-off places with teams no better or worse than us looking good for them. Both Rushden and Kettering won today with Luton and York City not far behind although the latter lost for the second game running at Forest Green.
The thing is with the play-offs is that although we know we are not good enough to go up this season the games themselves are mini money spinners and that's a good standby if we don't progress beyond the Stevenage games in the FA Trophy.
For today's game we made do without the injured John Finnigan and Robbie Matthews from the midweek Ebbsfleet game. Marcus Bignot came in for his first start in place of Finnigan while Adam Boyes took over from Matthews. Matthews went to the bench while James Lawrie, now returned from San Marino, joined him there.
Eastbourne made a few changes from the side that lost so heavily midweek and played most of the game in a defensive format with just a lone striker up front. That massed defence, and the woodwork, played it's negative part in a game that was never exciting to watch.
Both sides were slow to start although Boro should have scored in the opening seconds of the game when Neil Jenkins scuffed a shot wide and then James Taylor lobbed an effort towards goal but it too went wide. It didn't end there and, with the Reds looking nervous, Liam Enver-Marum had a shot blocked by Ross Atkins when the ball looked destined for the back of the net.
Slowly we got back into the game but chances to score were rare. Our first real chance came after twenty minutes into the game when new boy, Adam Boyes, managed to surge past defenders and fire in a firm low effort that was straight at Danny Knowles.
As the half hour approached we began to dominate the game and Eastbourne were forced more and more onto the back foot but we still couldn't capitalise on our position. Dean Bennett missed an easy chance to score but scuffed his shot instead and then probably the best chance of the half fell for leading scorer Brian Smikle when a shot from Boyes was parried into the path of Smikle but when he returned the shot back Ben Austin got back just in time to clear it from going in.