WITH little more than a week before their opening game, Witton have work to do.

Some of that is shooting practice.

Albion ought to have been out of their opponents’ reach long before Craig Lindfield swerved in a stylish equaliser for their former league rivals with 15 minutes left.

Instead Carl Macauley’s men were left hanging on by the finish and thanking their lucky stars too after substitute Rumenio Barai’s shot clattered the underside of the crossbar.

That risked undoing promise shown during a dominant opening.

James Murray redirected a cross from the right towards goal inside 60 seconds to prompt the home team’s on-trial goalkeeper to save.

Will Jones then headed off-target after James Short’s cross picked him out before Billy Smart lifted the ball high after Jones turned provider with a neat flick-on.

They established a deserved lead on 20 minutes when a trialist at full-back saw his cross loop up and over Marine’s net-minder before dipping into the corner.

The pattern didn’t change and Danny McKenna’s attempt, using the pace of Jones’ assist, again called the home team’s number one into action.

Marine steadied themselves, and Francois Antoine looked skywards with anguish after fizzing an angled drive past an upright.

Niall Cummins was inaccurate when trying to divert Lindfield’s driven centre but it was Witton that conjured the first-half's final opening.

Liam Goulding’s glorious chipped pass invited Murray to run clear but his finish lacked composure and the goalkeeper kept it out.

The rivals traded opportunities shortly after the interval when Marine’s goalkeeper parried Short’s powerful drive and again thwarted Murray either side of James Barrigan’s pot-shot skimming the crossbar at the other end after a quickly-taken free-kick caught out Albion’s defence.

Witton had already started to fade by the time Murray jabbed a weak effort wide.

They were fortunate when Lindfield, after intercepting Cesaire’s loose pass, arrowed a shot against the post.

However he was undeterred, curling his next attempt out of Renshaw’s reach after Cummins nudged the ball into his path.

Albion’s defending was less assured, and Barai was convinced the ball had bounced over the line off the woodwork after the visitors had again lost possession cheaply.

Antoine drilled over after Marine recycled possession and Steve Irwin’s header skidded wide from a Lindfield corner.

The final whistle was respite.

Marine | 4-5-1 | Trialist (GK), Devine, Miley, Staunton, Ellison, Lindfield (Trialist 87), Irwin, Trialist (Barai 60), Barrigan (Holsgrove 69), Antoine, Cummins (Trialist 87) Subs not used Mendes (GK), Strickland Goal Lindfield 75 

Witton | 4-3-3 | Renshaw (GK), Trialist, Anson, Wardle, Short, Smart, Goulding (Trialist 46), Cesaire, McKenna, Jones (Hopley 46), Murrray (Sorensen 87) Sub not used Neild (GK) Goal Trialist 20 

Referee Kieran Johnson 

Attendance 130