Substitute Charlotte Thurston came closest to scoring as Gillingham Ladies were held to a goalless draw against Plymouth Ladies in the Women’s Premier League Southern Division at Chatham Town.
She struck the underside of the bar in the second half as Gillingham missed a number of chances on a frustrating day for the hosts.
Plymouth started the better on a bobbly surface, with striker Emily Mousley sending a shot into the gloves of Gills keeper Courtney Shanley after just a few seconds.
Calls from the bench instructed the Gills to move the ball as they tried to put striker Ashlee Hincks through, while both teams put in strong challenges in the opening few minutes, with Gills’ Ellie Manning and Lauren Phillips being on the receiving end.
Gillingham were starting to find some rhythm in their passing. Hincks sent in a cross that Argyle keeper Michaela Phillips almost spilled.
The home side were unhappy with the referee shortly after when he decided not to stop the game as Emily Mousley sent a shot over when Lauren Phillips was down injured.
Manning found Hincks with a curling cross that she flicked just wide, while Phillips shot wide when she was found in the box by Sokhara Goodall. The referee then turned down a Gills penalty appeal when Phillips was tripped in the box.
Too many passes were overhit and the Gills were guilty of overplaying on occasions as the half wore on. Plymouth presented the Gills with a great chance when centre back Natalie Volpini headed up instead than out three times and midfielder Emma Tune stole in, curling a great effort just wide of Michaela Phillips’ left hand post.
Plymouth’s Ellana Moseley made a number of rampaging runs throughout the game, with Gills skipper Lauren Williams and Moseley a good match-up on the left wing. Ashlee Hincks sent in a shot which drew a simple save from Michaela Phillips, and Hincks was heavily involved in various neat moves as the half time whistle sounded.
Argyle began the second half brightly, as midfielder Rebekah Rose fired over and Moseley hit a tame shot wide when she was well placed.
Gillingham then had chances to make the breakthrough, as Charlotte Long forced a comfortable save from Michaela Phillips, while moves involving Emma Tune, Ashlee Hincks and Lauren Phillips broke down after overhit passes went through to keeper Phillips.
The game’s best chance then came as substitute Charlotte Thurston cannoned a dipping shot off the woodwork as she was sliding with Phillips beaten. Ellie Manning then came to the rescue for the Gills as prevented Ellana Moseley from scoring a tap in with a strong challenge after she had rounded keeper Courtney Shanley.
A good move between Rebekah Rose and Ezme Wells saw Rose force a good save out of Shanley. Both teams knew that one mistake would surely give their opponent the three points, and Ashlee Hincks’s miskick straight to Ellana Moseley could have been costly if Emily Mousley had done better when she was put through.
The game was ambling towards the final whistle when Argyle came close to stealing the points. The Gillingham penalty area was packed bar two Plymouth players when a long free kick came in and evaded everyone, with keeper Courtney Shanley brilliantly turning it round the post.
The resulting corner saw Argyle skipper Katie Middleton teed up on the edge of the box but she sliced high over the bar and into the trees behind the goal as the game ended level.
Gillingham Ladies: Courtney Shanley, Lauren Williams (c), Ellie Manning, Emma Tune, Emma Michaelmore, Sokhara Goodall, Louise Lorton, Charlotte Long, Lauren Phillips, Ashlee Hincks, Sophie Brown.
Subs: Charlotte Thurston, Bonnie Long, Georgia Reece, Ashleigh Loosemore, Sophie Ledger
Plymouth Argyle Ladies: Michaela Phillips, Jodie Chubb, Natalie Volpini, Phoebe Baker, Ezme Wells, Rebekah Rose, Katie Middleton (c), Rebecca Atkins, Ellana Moseley, Emily Mousley.
Subs: Katie Finch, Alexandra Hugh, Jenni Buckley