Sunshine Stars and Enugu Rangers shared the spoils in a dour NPFL match 21 tie at the Ondo State Sports Complex on Sunday.
Despite missing the chance to earn maximum points in the barren contest with some debatable episodes, Sunshine Stars clawed up two places to fifth on the log with 31 points from 21 matches.
For a moment the Akure landlords must have thought they had the dream start when Anthony Omaka forced home an effort from the edge inside the opening two minutes, but the goal was ostensibly ruled out for handball.
In bid to inject some fluid into his side’s play in the drab affair, coach Kabiru Dogo sent on Ogunniyi Omo Jesu in place of Joshua Obaje at the half hour mark and the youngster made instant impact with a lay off for Wasiu Jimoh, who dragged wide against the run of play.
At the stroke halftime the hosts had what appeared a genuine penalty appeal for a foul on Fuad Ekelojuoti in the area waived away while the referee again acted unconvinced following another challenge on Ekelojuoti and Mohammed Suleiman in the second half.
Sunshine Stars mounted pressure on the visitors late on and had a range-grounder from Ebuka Akobundu deflected just wide six minutes from time.
Nonetheless, goalkeepr Japhet Opubo who spent most of the stoppages time on the turf proved unbeatable for both Suleiman and Ekelojuoti from begging chances at the tail end that also saw a big miss for Rangers.
Sunshine Stars visit Warri Wolves on match day 22.