GATESHEAD maintained their Conference play-off push with a hard-fought goalless draw at promotion rivals Braintree Town.

Heed goalkeeper Adam Bartlett produced a crucial penalty save with ten minutes left to ensure his side remain three points ahead of their opponents in the final play-off place.

Braintree created the bulk of the opportunities all evening, but Bartlett kept out Matthew Paine's header in the first half and saved Jordan Cox's shot after the interval.

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Gateshead looked to be heading for defeat when they conceded an 80th-minute spot-kick, but Bartlett turned Dan Holman's effort onto the post.

The Tynesiders held on for a fourth clean sheet in succession, and are well positioned with two of their three remaining games due to take place at the International Stadium.