VERY little football was played on the South Coast today, but the results picked up by two of the Isle of Wight's top sides could prove to be important.

Cowes Sports, who went into their match against fellow Sydenhams Wessex Premier strugglers Christchurch, on a miserable run of form and results, picked up a vital point in Dorset.

The Yachtsmen took the lead on 17 minutes.

A corner into the Christchurch box was only half-clearded by a defender, and from the edge of the penalty area, Charlie Allen strikes the ball into the bopttom corner.

By the half-hour mark, the game had become very open, end-to-end and bitty one, with some strong challenges flying in on a wet pitch and Cowes occasionally playing some decent one and two-touch football at times as they went into the break a goal up.

Unfortunately for the Islanders, Christchurch equalised to set up a tense finale to the match, but which ended 1-1, to keep them in 17th place in the table.

With Bemerton Heath Harlequins below them winning 4-1, Cowes are, however, closer to the sides in the drop zone.

Cowes have a tough match next week at home to third-placed Horndean.

In Sydenhams Wessex Division 1, East Cowes Vics ended their four-game losing run with a hard-fought win at home to Ringwood Town, who started the game third bottom.

In a poor, scrappy game, lacking quality, but full of hard work and endeavour, Vics took the lead on seven minutes.

A ball down the left was lifted over the advancing Ringwood keeper and somehow cleared off the line, but Jimmy Burton was quickest to react to the loose ball to slide it into the back of the net, just before the defender could get to it.

Vics captain Joe Butcher almost doubled the lead on 16 minutes when he cut inside from the right and, from the edge of the box, smashed a shot goalwards, which was superbly parried away by the keeper.

As the half went on, Ringwood were the more dominant attacking force, with Vics keeper Karl Steinbon-Busse making a fantastic double save to shut them out.

However, the home keeper fumbled a catch unchallenged from a corner and, as the defence tried to scramble it away, a Ringwood player was hauled down in the penalty box for a spot kick.

Steinbon-Bosse guessed the right way and saved well to his right to divide the sides at the interval.

The second half was one in which both defences were completely on top.

Just after Ringwood missed a sitter on 49 minutes, Butcher almost scored — a carbon copy effort of his first half strike, which flew just wide of the right-hand post.

Vics moved up to 12th place in the table.

In the third round of the Hampshire Intermediate Cup, Chamberlayne Athletic beat Isle of Wight League Division 1 side Shanklin 2-0.

In the Hampshire Junior A Cup third round, the clash of Division 2 high-flyers Ryde Saints and Carisbrooke United survived the weather, with Carisbrooke winning 2-0 at Simeon Street Rec.

                                            TODAY'S RESULTS

Sydenhams Wessex Premier: Christchurch 1, Cowes Sport 1.

Sydenhams Wessex Division 1: East Cowes Vics 1, Ringwood Town 0.

Hampshire Intermediate Cup, third round: Chamberlayne Athletic 2, Shanklin 0.

Hampshire Junior A Cup, third round: Ryde Saints 0, Carisbrooke United 2.

Combination 1: Northwood St John Reserves 5, Ventnor Reserves 2; Shanklin Reserves 5, Osborne Coburg 0. Reserves.

Combination 2: Wootton Reserves 3, Newchurch Reserves 1.