SLIDESHOW: Morecambe 0-0 Cheltenham Town

Morecambe played out an entertaining goalless draw with fellow League 2 high-fliers Cheltenham Town on Saturday.

The Robins should have been out of sight in the first hour but were guilty of wasting countless chances.

Cheltenham Town's Jordan Wynter and Morecambe's Kevin Ellison battle for the ball. Picture: Dave Howarth/PA Wire.

Cheltenham Town's Jordan Wynter and Morecambe's Kevin Ellison battle for the ball. Picture: Dave Howarth/PA Wire.

The Shrimps came back into things in the closing stages but neither side could force a winner as Cheltenham stayed unbeaten and moved to the top of the table with Jim Bentley’s side a point behind in second.

Cheltenham made a composed start at the Globe Arena, dominating possession and creating some good early chances.

Big central defender Steve Elliott headed over from 10 yards when found unmarked by a Joe Hanks corner on 16 minutes before Barry Roche rushed out to deny Craig Braham-Barrett after he exchanged passes with John Marquis. Matt Richards pulled wide the follow-up as the Shrimps lived a charmed life.

Braham-Barrett jinked his way down the left again on 20 minutes and cutting into the area was only denied by a block from Alan Goodall.

The visitors then had a second free header from a corner on 27 minutes but fortunately for the Shrimps it was the turn of captain Matt Taylor to head over.

Cheltenham kept on coming and the next chance on the half hour was of the Shrimps’ own making, miscommunication between Goodall and Andy Parrish allowing Marquis a volley from 20 yards which Roche acrobatically turned over the crossbar.

Marquis made far less of a connection with another chance three minutes later, slicing horribly wide from 15 yards after Braham-Barrett had cruised past Beeley for the umpteenth time in the half.

At the other end the Shrimps did have one tame effort at goal shortly after, but Andy Fleming’s shot from the edge of the area brought audible groans from a frustrated home crowd.

On the stroke of half-time Byron Harrison had the Robins’ latest excellent chance to give them a deserved lead but he shot tamley at Roche after Marquis had robbed Ryan Edwards of possession 30 yards from goal.

The Shrimps made a more composed start to the second half, Kevin Ellison’s shot from 18 yards after a neat move deflecting off Jack Redshaw and wide five minutes after the break.

Cheltenham continued to control possession and look a threat in wide areas however, Jordan Wynter’s cross needed to be tipped over by Roche on 56 minutes after taking a deflection off Joe Widdowson.

The Shrimps then burst into life with two chances in two minutes just before the hour mark.

First Redshaw drove from halfway before hitting a shot narrowly wide from the edge of the area before substitute Paul Mullin produced a similar run just moments after coming on, feeding Jamie Devitt who shot over the bar under pressure.

Morecambe were finally in the game but still looked far from convincing at the back, the visitors capitalising on some indecision on 66 minutes with Roche needing to tip Matt Richards’ effort from 20 yards round the post.

For the Shrimps, Mullin’s direct style caused problems from the bench, the former Liverpool youngster shooting narrowly wide from 20 yards after cutting in from the left.

Ellison was next to go close for the hosts but his free-kick from 22 yards was well saved low to his right by Trevor Carson.

Mullin came close again three minutes from time, again driving in from the left before pulling a shot narrowly wide from just inside the penalty area.

The left flank was bringing rewards for Morecambe and Redshaw was next to cause problems with his pull back expertly cleared from inside the six-yard area by Elliott when he could have diverted the ball into his own net.

But it wasn’t one-way traffic, Roche having to beat away a 25-yard drive from Jason Taylor as the game entered stoppage time with both sides having to settle for a point.

Morecambe: Roche, Beeley, Edwards, Parrish, Widdowson, Goodall, Wright (capt) (Mullin 58), Fleming (Kenyon 83), Devitt (Amond 81), Ellison, Redshaw. Subs not used: Arestidou, Sampson, Williams, Doyle.

Booked: Fleming

Cheltenham Town: Carson, Taylor (capt), Brown, Elliott, Wynter, Braham-Barrett, Richards, Hanks (Sterling-James 80), Taylor, Harrison (Arthur 74), Marquis (Gornell 90). Subs not used: Haworth, Deaman, Black, Reynolds.

Booked: Marquis

Referee: Mark Heywood

Attendance: 2,273 (147 away)