TRAFFORD earned a precious and hard fought point on Tuesday night in their Evo Stik League Division One North encounter on the Wirral.
The uneven surface favoured the more direct and physical approach adopted by the home side with Trafford struggling to play with their normal fluency and composure.
After just three minutes the visitors were almost caught out when right back Ally Brown carelessly conceded possession and John Couch fired wide from 15 yards.
Trafford keeper Tom Read then produced two fine blocks to deny Joe Evans and Lairds giant striker Aaron Bowen before a right wing corner ended with Mike Grogan glancing a header just wide of Read’s goal.
Garry Vaughan’s young side had to wait until the 28th minute for their first attempt on goal, Shelton Payne working a short corner on the left and blasting in a drive that Kevin Atherton pushed behind.
Liam Shipton then attempted an audacious chip from 20 yards that Atherton tipped over but the half ended with Lairds pushing forward once more and Tom Read producing another fine save to deny John Couch from point blank range.
Trafford were on top in the opening stages of the second period with Michael Oates back-heeling against the foot of the post following a long throw in by Steve Mason and the deadlock was finally broken in the 52nd minute when Kamahl Whight burst through from the left, held off a challenge by Potter and cooly placed the ball wide of the advancing Atherton.
However, the visitors joy was short lived and four minutes later Laird’s levelled when a neat move down the left ended with Freddie Potter cracking a low drive into the bottom corner from 25 yards.
Back came Trafford and Shelton Payne set up Liam Shipton but Atherton flung himself to his left to save before performing further heroics with an acrobatic dive to thwart a curling drive by Payne.
At the other end Tom Read tipped a Dan O’Brien thunderbolt past the post and despite some late pressure from the home side the score remained at 1-1 when the final whistle arrived.
All in all a draw was probably a fair result from a game that was a contrast in styles but that had been played in great spirit by two fully committed teams.
Trafford will be hoping to return to winning ways on Saturday when they entertain Lancaster City at Shawe View, kick off 3 p.m., and then on Tuesday night they play host to Leek Town for a League Cup Tie kicking off at 7-45 pm.