Mansfield Town 0, Grays Athletic 0 GRAYS’ boss Julian Dicks admitted that his heart was in his mouth as his troops successfully fought off a second-half bombardment from promotion-chasing hosts Mansfield.

After a disappointing first-half, the Stags launched an Alamo style siege on the visiting goal after the break.

But the New Rec side escaped with a share of the spoils to help their bid to beat the drop with goalkeeper Stuart Robinson eventually emerging a hero.

Dicks said: “To be honest I gave the keeper a bit of a roasting at the half-time break after a couple of saves which he dropped or punched the ball when he should have caught it.

“But he was absolutely magnificent in the second-half. It’s great to get a point from a tough place to come like this, especially after that second-half onslaught.

“My heart was in my mouth the whole 45 minutes of the second-half.”

Dicks was delighted at his side’s response to midweek home defeat by Histon and added: “All I ask of the players is to give 100 per cent. Recently we’ve not had a lot of luck so I’m very happy with today’s point.”

Rugged Grays earned four of the five bookings they picked up during the game in the first-half and were only really threatened at this stage when Lewis Briscoe missed a good chance.

Grays, followed by a travelling contingent of just eight fans, had second-half efforts from Ryan James and Billy Bingham hitting the side netting, but apart from that it was the Stags consistently hunting a winner.

Mansfield were awarded their spot-kick when Gavin Hoyte was judged to have fouled Kyle Perry, but Robinson reached high to push away Rob Duffy’s 57th-minute penalty and then ensure there was no danger from the rebound.

Robinson then pushed an Ollie Hotchkiss’ effort onto the bar after 82 minutes and made a superb double save to thwart Lee Morris and Andy Burgess as the action neared an end.

Grays are due at Blue Square South Chelmsford City tonight (Monday) in the Essex Senior Cup fourth round.