MANAGERLESS Malvern Town threw away a two-goal lead to begin 2008 with a 2-2 draw at Cinderford in British Gas Business Division One Midlands.

Matt Aubrey and Ed Lyons had Malvern in control but Kristian Whitcombe and Ben Gascoyne hit back for a point.

Malvern started brightly and Damion Jarrett's fourth-minute shot from edge of area was turned away by keeper Nick Church.

The visitors went ahead in frantic style on 24 minutes. Church saved from Lyons and Bryan Craven's rebound was cleared off the line. The ball fell to Jamie Hyde who was brought down and Aubrey scored from the penalty spot.

Eight minutes later it was 2-0 when Lyons slotted the ball home from Chris Hughes' left-wing cross.

Malvern were coasting but their lead was cut on the stroke of half-time when Kristian Whitcombe converted a penalty after a Malvern defender had handled in the area.

This gave Cinderford confidence to go forward in the second-half and Jason Price headed a free-kick just wide in the 54th minute before Neil Griffiths fired just wide a minute later.

Aaron Drake and Hughes both had efforts cleared off the line as Malvern sought to restore their two-goal advantage.

Cinderford drew level 15 minutes from time when Ben Gascoyne's strike left Craig Humphries unsighted.

Substitute Daniel Harding-Hall headed over late on but Malvern could not find a third goal.

Malvern's next game is a re-arranged Worcester Infirmary Cup first round game on Tuesday, January 8 (7.45pm).

They do not have another league game until Leighton Town visit on Tuesday, January 15.