Injury-hit Workington still lead the NPL West table and remain unbeaten but suffered further setbacks in the 1-1 home draw with Leek Town.

Brad Carroll, just returning from injury, limped off with a recurrence and Sam Smith was hurt early but battled on to complete the 90 minutes.

With Kyle Harrison available again after suspension and Dan Wordsworth itching to play again after his absence, it’s unlikely any risks will be taken with Carroll and Smith against Ramsbotton on Tuesday.

Reds’ six absences against a competent Leek side included Rowan Roache who had been taken ill (not Covid related) on Friday night.

Short of eight seniors at Trafford in midweek when they drew 2-2, that debilitating figure was reduced to six for the visit of Leek but essentially the ones who might have made the difference were still missing.

Manager Chris Willcock said: ”I couldn’t fault the lads for effort. They gave me, and the club, everything but ultimately didn’t create enough.

“I thought we controlled the second period but didn’t have the cutting edge to get the second goal which would have sealed the points. We got the lead and the players carried out the gameplan as we wanted, but ultimately some sloppy play cost us a goal.

“We just have to assess how players are feeling for Tuesday and go with what we’ve got. I am still looking for players but they have to be the right kind of players for the club.”

Leek Town became the first team to take a league point away from Borough Park in what proved to be something of a smash and grab.

The league leaders had dominated the game for long periods, yet were unable to create much against a resolute Leek defence, particularly in the second half.

Their best moments all came in the first half when they took the lead on 30 minutes, hit the post, and were denied by keeper Dan Roberts.

A Brad Hubbold corner saw Steve Rigg climb highest and his header was blocked on the line by Roberts. He couldn’t hold it and Paul Marshall hammered home from a yard out.

From another well-worked corner, this time to the near post, Brad Connell dived in but his header came back off the post. Then Roberts saved twice in quick succession from Matty Clarke, the second a particularly sharp save at the foot of the post.

Leek, who had done all their best work in defence, scored an equaliser out of nowhere on 73 minutes.

Oliver Harrison charged forward to win the ball and when it was played through to William Saxon he scored with a low shot beyond Jim Atkinson into the bottom corner.

But on a day when manager Chris Willcock will consider it two points lost, there were more injury concerns with Carroll, Sam Smith and Marshall in the wars.

“We will have to assess everyone ahead of Tuesday’s game but I am still on the lookout for new players because of our circumstances,” said Willcock. “There were one or two potential signings during the week but they weren’t the right fit.”