Haverfordwest County will compete for a place in Europe this season after they secured top spot in the Cymru Premier Play Off Conference with a 1-1 draw against Aberystwyth Town.

Substitute Jack Leahy netted a crucial equaliser for Tony Pennock's men after Sam Litchfield had earned the visitors a slender lead just before the half-time break.

The Bluebirds were reduced to 10 men in the 73rd minute when defender Kyle Patten was sent off, but they held firm to extend their unbeaten run to six games.

"It was always going to be a tough game today," said manager Pennock. "We had some good opportunities first half and didn't take them, and we know Aber are very good on set-pieces and they showed that again today.

"The boys battled well and second half we started brighter, we made a couple of changes to freshen things up and the subs have come on and made an impact. It's a point, and I'm pleased we didn't end at home with a defeat.

"The boys have shown a lot of character to finish seventh, obviously at the start of the season the aim was to finish sixth, but as the season has progressed the boys have got a lot more confident and we're delighted to be in the play-offs."

Early chances had seen Ioan Evans fire wide for County, and Jordan Evans’ header was easy for Matthew Turner to save in the Aber goal during a promising start from the home side.

In response Alex Darlington curled a shot into home keeper Zac Jones’ hands, and the game opened up as Jack Wilson fired wide before Aber’s Mark Cadwallader saw a header tipped over.

Davies headed wide for the hosts, then Litchfield headed over for the Seasiders, before Louis Bradford and Niall Flint also went close, with both sides competing well.

Turner had to make a super save from a Wilson long throw to keep it level, but then Jack Thorn had a header cleared for a corner, and Litchfield brought another save out of Jones. 

Finally a long throw from Thorn down the right caused consternation in the box and Litchfield reacted quickest to prod home a crucial goal just before the break top put Aber ahead.

The hosts pressed hard after the break with a series of corners and long throws, which were repelled by a solid looking back four.

Aber then broke down the left and Iwan Lewis played in Flint, who cut inside and smashed a volley agonisingly against Zac Jones’ crossbar, with Cadwallader missing from the rebound.

Minutes later the lively Leahy sneaked between Aber’s back four and Turner to chip in an equaliser, and the scores were level. 

The Black and Greens were not downhearted and the effervescent Cadwallader saw a brilliant header saved on the line by Jones, with a subsequent ball in by Darlington caused consternation in the home box. 

Patten was then sent off for a late kick out at Harry Arnison, and Turner got down well to save a low shot before Leahy fired over.

Aber finished the game strongly as Darlington saw a header from Billy Kirkman’s ball in saved, then Litchfield volleyed just over the bar from the edge of the box. 

A series of Aber corners followed with Walsh the next to be denied by the overworked Jones in the Haverfordwest goal. 

A late chance for Darlington flashed agonisingly wide, before Turner came out well in injury time to catch Henry Jones’ corner, and both sides had to settle for a point.

Haverfordwest sign off their league campaign with a trip to face Airbus UK Broughton on Sunday, 22 April. Kick-off is 12.45pm.

HAVERFORDWEST COUNTY: Zac Jones, Rhys Abbruzzese, Dylan Rees (Captain) (45’ Harri John), Kyle Patten, Corey Shephard (76’ Ricky Watts), Jordan Davies (45’ Jack Leahy), Lee Jenkins, Jack Wilson, Ioan Evans (65’ Henry Jones), Oscar Borg, Daniel Hawkins. Substitutes not used: Lee Idzi, Iori Humphreys, Elliott Dugan.

ABERYSTWYTH TOWN: Matthew Turner, Louis Bradford, Sam Litchfield, Jack Thorn (Captain), Iwan Lewis, Niall Flint, Mark Cadwallader, Harry Arnison, Liam Walsh, Alexander Darlington, Billy Kirkman. Substitutes not used: Thomas Owen, John Owen, Cameron Allen.

OFFICIALS: Referee: Bryn Markham-Jones. Assistants: Jordan Christopher & Johnathon Bebee-Bryant.