AN 89th-minute equaliser robbed Harwich and Parkeston of a hard-earned victory at Hackney Wick.

Instead, the sides ended up drawing 1-1, in the Thurlow Nunn League first division south contest on Wednesday night.

With massive road congestion due to an overturned lorry on the A12 delaying Harwich's arrival until 30 minutes before kick-off, pre-game preparation was severely hampered.

The pitch was probably the worst Harwich have played on this season and totally restricted the quality of football that could be played, with the home side, particularly, playing long balls throughout.

Furthermore, with six bulbs not functioning on the floodlights, there were several 'dark' areas on the pitch.

Harwich tried to play their passing game but the awful surface meant a lot of passes went astray.

In fact, the first half was pretty dire, with neither side really creating any chances.

After the interval, Harwich improved massively and certainly looked the better side.

After 75 minutes, they took the lead when, following good build-up out of defence, the ball reached Jordan Heath, 25 yards from goal.

He went past two defenders in superb fashion before crashing the ball into the roof of the net from the edge of the penalty area.

Harwich replaced Callum Griffith with Sean Mathurin and he saw a great effort go just over the bar.

The game then became a little aggressive as the home side became more frustrated.

Harwich's physio was busy as several late challenges left their players with injuries.

As a result, Harwich were forced to use their two remaining substitutes, losing Heath and Shaun Kioussis, and this seemed to upset Harwich's balance and spur Hackney on to try and get the equaliser.

This happened in the last minute of normal time when an unmarked winger found far too much space on the right and, from a long cross into the box, an unmarked home defender headed home to share the points.

Harwich, who had no game last weekend, host Lopes Tavares on Saturday.

Coincidentally, neighbours Little Oakley, also without a game last weekend, make the same journey down the A12 to play Hackney Wick.