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Leyton Orient earn point at Preston North End
Leyton Orient ended their run of defeats with a 1-1 draw at promotion rivals Preston in League 1 this afternoon.
Orient grabbed the opening goal just before half-time when defender Mathieu Baudry netted from close range.
But Preston drew level in the second half when the visitors conceded a penalty and Joe Garner powered home his effort.
Preston pushed for a winner but Orient held out for a hard-earned point which was a much-needed result after three defeats in a row.
The O's brought keeper Eldin Jakupovic back after he rejoined the club on loan from Hull City. Striker David Mooney was recalled to the side in place of Chris Dagnall.
Orient handed a surprise place on the bench for Shaun Batt who made a dramatic recovery from his hamstring injury suffered at Christmas. Russell Slade also opted for Lloyd James in midfield with Marvin Bartley dropping out.
There was an impeccable minute's silence before the game paying tribute to England and Preston legend Sir Tom Finney after his death yesterday.
Orient got off to a bright start and could have taken an early lead from a James free-kick but Baudry's close-range effort was saved by Declan Rudd.
Preston created their first decent opening from Paul Gallagher's corner but Garner volleyed over the bar.
Jakupovic indicated why Orient were so keen to bring him back when the keeper made a fine save to deny Craig Davies.
The hosts were starting to get on top and had another opportunity but Scott Laird's free-kick was too close to Jakupovic.
Preston were looking dangerous and Jakupovic got the faintest of touches on Neil Kilkenny's shot to turn it around the post.
There was another good chance for North End through Gallagher but he fired wide from close range.
Orient snatched the opening goal just before the break when a Gary Sawyer free-kick was floated through to Kevin Lisbie and he headed on for Baudry to volley home.
The O's had a decent opportunity to extend their lead in the second half through Mooney but the striker blasted his effort over the bar.
Preston were awarded a penalty in the 64th minute when Baudry was penalised for challenging Davies. Garner stepped up and smashed home the spot kick to bring the hosts level.
Slade made his first substitution when he brought on Dagnall for the tiring Lisbie.
Orient thought Rudd handled the ball outside his area to block Romain Vincelot's shot but the referee ruled he had not used his hands.
The hosts should have taken the lead when Scott Wiseman sent in a fine delivery but substitute Kevin Davies' diving header went wide.
Orient handed Batt a welcome return from injury late on when the attacker replaced Moses Odubajo.
Preston pushed for a winner but the O's would not be denied and clinched a point which ensured they remained five points ahead of their opponents in the table.
Preston: Rudd; Laird, Clarke, Wright, Wiseman; Gallagher (Brownhill, 76), Keane (Holmes, 57), Welsh, Kilkenny; Davies (K Davies, 76), Garner
Subs not used: Stuckmann, Beavon, Buchanan, King
Leyton Orient: Jakupovic; Sawyer, Clarke, Baudry, Cuthbert; Cox, James, Vincelot, Odubajo (Batt, 82); Lisbie (Dagnall, 70), Mooney
Subs not used: Larkins, Lasimant, Bartley, Simpson, Ness
Referee: Dean Whitestone
Attendance: 13,440 (372)