SWINDON Supermarine’s fate was finally sealed on Saturday as a battling 1-1 draw at promotion hopefuls Cambridge was not enough to save the South Marston club from certain relegation.

After the best part of a decade surviving Southern League relegation battles, Marine finally succumbed to the drop, finishing second from bottom in the league, with only local rivals Cirencester propping them up.

Marine were already condemned to the bottom four, but victory would have seem them finish with the best points total in all the step seven drop zones and with every chance of keeping their place during the annual non-league reshuffle in the summer.

Ash Edenborough’s first-half penalty gave the visitors every hope of another great escape but Dave Theobald’s 70th-minute header booked Cambridge’s play-off place and consigned Marine to Division One South & West.

Joint player-manager Gary Horgan said: “We were on top in the first half and got the reward we deserved with the penalty.

“We were comfortable throughout but the ref, who had had a great game up to that point, made four or five bad decisions in quick succession which allowed Cambridge to really put some pressure on for a five-minute spell and during that spell they got the equaliser.

“But again, after that, we looked like the side that would go on to win it.

“We went into the game knowing we needed to get a result to have any chance of staying up.

“I told the lads that it’s a really tough division to get into so they really needed to fight to stay in the division because some of them may never get to play at that level again - that’s the reality of the situation.

“They may just drift down the leagues now, or if they stay with us try to fight to get back to that level.”

Horgan’s own future, and that of co-boss Matt Robinson also remains up in the air after their first full season in charge.

“I need a couple of weeks to think about things and speak to the people who matter to me,” said Horgan.

“The club is keen for us to do it again next season but I think something would have to change. Not because it hasn’t worked, but because with us both still playing we’ve missed a lot of football and it’s a real burden on the budget.

“One of us would probably need to be on the sidelines permanently, but I still think I’ve got something to offer as a player.

“I’m just looking forward to taking a break away from football now before I make a decision.”

Elsewhere, Ross Stearn scored Chippenham’s goal in a 1-1 home draw with Arlesey, and Jody Bevan bagged Cirencester’s consolation in a 3-1 defeat to Banbury.