The Hoops had to settle for a point on Saturday against a Bearsted side who battled hard to end their recent losing run.
The Bears had lost their seven previous league games but deserved their share of the spoils from a scrappy encounter in which the fierce wind blowing across the pitch made accurate long-range passing difficult for both teams.
Playing their first home game for six weeks, Deal started sluggishly against a side they had beaten 1-0 away just before New Year but gradually increased their attacking threat and were rewarded when Connor Coyne’s 25th-minute strike took a slight deflection off Bearsted skipper Rob Lyall into the visitors’ net.
However, the Hoops frequently found themselves outnumbered in central midfield and Bearsted began to put that situation to their advantage with Constantin Scarlet twice going close to equalising before half-time.
And, with Deal again making a slow start to the second half, this time they paid the price as Lucian Scarlet produced a clinical finish from Matt Garner’s 52nd -minute through-ball.
Both sides then created enough chances to claim all three points. Bearsted were denied a second goal when Jack Paxman, booked in the first half for what looked a perfectly good tackle, headed off the line from Reece Collins while at the other end Sam Wilson also saw his goalbound effort blocked.
Then, with virtually the action of the game, Ben Chapman set up Coyne in space but the striker fired over the bar to end a frustrating afternoon for all concerned.
Deal: Tonkin, Paxman, Alexander, Hark, K Smith, Foster (C Miller 46), Adams (Reeves 63), A Miller (Walsh 80), Coyne, Wilson, Chapman.