Tynecastle 21s remain undefeated in their quest to be crowned East of Scotland league champions after a hard-fought 0-0 draw away to Leith Athletic, who have title aspirations of their own.
Tranent Juniors currently top the table but Tynecastle, in particular, are well-placed having six games in hand and 13 points adrift.
Gordon Harris struck the left post of the Leith goal frame from 20 yards as Tynecastle went in search of the opener before Tony Marziban came close for the home side as his shot from distance was not far off target.
Ryan Duffy then tried his luck from the edge of the area and despite Tynecastle goalkeeper Sean Diamond misjudging the flight of the ball, the side netting kept the score level at the break.
The second half produced few clear-cut opportunities but the visitors did have the ball in the net after 75 minutes when Ross Yeoman side-footed Harris’s cut-back past Kyle Rankin, but the goal was ruled out for offside.
Tynecastle coach Ross Vinter was disappointed not to come away with all three points but underlined that his side control their own destiny.
Vinter said: “I think it’s probably two points dropped. We were certainly the better side and it was disappointing with the referee’s decision at the goal. But Leith is always a difficult place to come and the league is still in our own hands.”
Leith Athletic’s Graham Miller said: “It was a real scrappy game and probably neither side did enough to win. We worked hard and battled away but didn’t really get the ball down and pass it like we usually do. We were hoping to take maximum points as we were the home side.”
Colts aim for a late charge
Haddington Athletic Colts 19s have Division 1 league leaders Musselburgh Windsor in their sights after thrashing Tranent Juniors 7-0 at Whittingehame Drive.
Windsor are 25 points ahead of their East Lothian rivals but have played eight more fixtures, so Haddington’s Ian MacDonald is confident his players can provide a late charge.
He said: “We still have to play Musselburgh twice so I think it’s going to come down to what happens in those matches. Before the weekend our aim was second but now we have hopes of winning the league.”
With Musselburgh Windsor suffering a surprise 4-2 home defeat by Lochend, Haddington capitalised with a hugely impressive performance as both Darren Handling and Sam Wyllie grabbed a brace, with Scott Souness, Myles Doig and Murray Lorimer were also on target.
Rose keep hopes alive
Bonnyrigg Rose 19s are also involved within the chase for Division 1 league honours as a 2-1 victory over Musselburgh Windsor Colts at Poltonhall moved the Midlothian side into second place.
A great move involving Lewis Turkington and Josh Anderson paved the way for the home side’s opener as Thomas Thomson arrived at the back post to side-foot his shot into the back of the net after 18 minutes.
Bonnyrigg moved 2-0 in front before the interval with a second strike that was reminiscent of their first. Another flowing move up the right-wing was finished off by the composed Turkington, who took his time before firing a shot past the Colts’ goalkeeper.
Musselburgh did manage a consolation in the second half through Lee Edwardson’s well-struck effort, Rose held on for a welcome three points.
Bonnyrigg coach Phil Burton said afterwards: “It was probably the best we have played for a few weeks as we passed the ball, so we’re delighted.
“We lost to Tranent in our first game after the Christmas break which was a real blow, so we’re going to have to go the next 11 games undefeated to have a chance, but you never know.”