Boreham Wood made a dramatic start to 2018 as Angelo Balanta’s 90th minute strike earned them a 1-1 draw against Sutton United on New Year’s Day.

The Wood had the battle hard for a share of the spoils after Jamie Collins had put the homes side ahead with a penalty on the hour.

Their refusal to give in was eventually rewarded and leaves them a place outside the play-off places on goal difference alone.

With Sutton occupying third spot in the National League, the game was always likely to be a testing one.

Luke Garrard showed United the respect their league position warranted and shifted to a 4-5-1- formation.

Wood still started the game with greater attacking verve and went close to breaking the deadlock through Blair Turgott’s fine wing play.

He broke clear down the wing and looked set to race clear in the box, only for two defenders to muscle him out.

Turgott was involved again moments later and shifted the ball onto Shaun Jeffers who provided a cross which Bruno Andrade couldn’t quite reach.

Sutton were beginning to grow into the game and Went close as the half wore on with a shot from 25 yards which flew just over the bar.

With the game locked firmly in a stalemate it took an individual error to break the deadlock when Tom Champion caught Adam Coombes from behind.

The clumsy challenge gave the referee little choice but to point to the spot and Collins duly dispatched the resulting penalty to make it 1-0.

Garrard wasted little time in reacting to the blow as he introduced Ricky Shakes and Balanta in place of Turgott and Jeffers.

His changes had the desired impact in the final minute when, after heavy pressure, Balanta rose highest at a corner and headed home to secure a deserved point.

The Woods’ play-off hopes remain very much intact and they are behind seventh-place Tranmere Rovers by virtue of goal difference alone.

They will hope to build on the draw when they take on a rejuvenated Leyton Orient at Brisbane Road tomorrow.

The O’s have taken 10 points from their last five league games and are enjoying life under new boss Justin Edinburgh.

Orient come into the game on the back of a 0-0 draw with Dagenham & Redbridge.