COLCHESTER United played out a second successive 0-0 draw after claiming a point at second-placed Exeter City this afternoon.

The U’s extended their unbeaten run in League Two to 15 matches, after playing out a goal-less draw at St James Park.

Both sides had their fair share of chances, in what was an even battle played out in front of the 156 U’s fans who had made the trip down to Devon.

Colchester head coach John McGreal made one change to his starting line-up for their game against Exeter.

Luke Gambin was handed his first start since January 4 after replacing Frank Nouble, who missed out due to a back injury.

He played in the number ten role, with Kwame Poku switching to the right flank.

Exeter made a rapid start and almost took the lead after barely 30 seconds.

Nicky Ajose found space on the right of the U's area and drove in a fierce shot that flashed just past the near post, with Colchester goalkeeper Dean Gerken at full stretch.

Exeter almost scored again two minutes later when Ryan Bowman was sent through by Randell Williams but after holding the ball up, the home player could only drag a shot wastefully wide with only Gerken to beat.

Colchester gradually warmed to the task and nearly went ahead in the 15th minute through Harry Pell, whose fierce 25-yard strike was well parried low down by Jonny Maxted and eventually cleared.

Exeter looked dangerous on the break and only Kwame Poku’s brilliant challenge in the area denied Archie Collins as he was about to shoot after Exeter had broken away swiftly.

At the other end, Luke Prosser headed over from a free-kick but Gerken was forced into action just after the half hour when he got down low to save after Exeter skipper Jake Taylor had tried his luck with a curled effort in the area.

Colchester finished the first half strongly though and almost scored in the 38th minute when Callum Harriott’s close-range shot was blocked on the line by Pierce Sweeney, after Theo Robinson had picked his team-mate out.

But the sides went in goal-less at the break and the U’s started the second half well, with Robinson sending a tame shot straight at Maxted from a tight angle after getting the better of an Exeter defender in the area.

The contest became a midfield battle after that but a great chance for the hosts went begging on the hour mark when Jayden Richardson escaped down the right but drilled a good opportunity wide of the far post.

Bowman’s effort in the area deflected over the bar for a corner following some good attacking play by Exeter, before Colchester made their first change of the day when Courtney Senior replaced Harriott with 20 minutes remaining.

Parkes blazed a good chance over for the hosts after Nicky Law had intelligently flicked on into his path while at the other end, Ryan Clampin’s first-time effort sailed wide after Ryan Jackson's long throw had been only partially cleared.

Colchester finished the game strongly but Exeter went close to scoring a winner twice in stoppage-time.

Law's shot was deflected just wide and Collins' fierce shot was well saved by Gerken just before the final whistle, as the points were shared.