After yet another weekend's round of league fixtures was ruined by the weather, Enfield 1893 and Aveley quickly arranged the friendly, this time on the 3G at The Score Centre in Leyton.
And after drubbing another Essex Senior League side last weekend in the form of Eton Manor, this weekend Aveley faced a sterner test as they played the side who currently sit joint top of that league with games in hand.
Gardner said after the game he felt his side may have underestimated their opponents from the tier below, but Enfield's confidence was clear to see as they took a 12th minute lead through Jake Giddings.
A clipped ball over the top split Ade Osifuwa and Brenden Cavalier with Giddings nipping in to squeeze the ball past Jack Giddens in the Aveley net and give Enfield the lead.
Playing in the shadow of Leyton Orient’s Brisbane Road ground, Aveley were unable to muster a single noteworthy effort on the Enfield goal in the opening 45 minutes.
And Enfield almost had a two goal advantage going into the break when John Bricknell saw Giddens well off his line before trying an audacious effort from just inside the Aveley half, clipping the top of the crossbar.
The second half was much the same story as the first and it was Enfield who continued to look most likely to score with second half substitute, Kalin Artakiev, being called into action twice in a matter of mintues midway through the half.
Eventually though the Millers did force the Enfield 'keeper into a save when a loose pass from the goalkeeper fell straight to Aryan Tajbakhsh, whose rasping drive was tipped over.
Minutes later Aveley equalised when Petrit Elbi slid the ball into the feet of substitute Junior Ogedi-Uzokwe, who’d gotten in between the Enfield centre half pairing, before scoring with his left foot to equalise with eight minutes remaining which is how the scores stayed.
Afterwards, Gardner was none too pleased with the performance saying "I'm disappointed because like Tuesday (against Grays) I felt the energy levels were low.
"I think the boys underestimated them and they didn't show them any respect. There's about six or seven teams in the Ryman League that they are much better than and they were the better team today."
"We were fortunate to get the equaliser at the end, because apart from Aryan's shot just before that I think that was the first time the goalie had been tested."
Aveley: Jack Giddens (Kalin Artakiev 46'), Adetayo Osifuwa (Petrit Elbi 79'), Sam Holloway, Jay Leader, Brenden Cavalier (Junior Ogedi-Uzokwe 57'), Nick Azzopardi (Gbenga Sonuga 46'), Petrit Elbi (George Whitelock 46'), Aryan Tajbakhsh, Lee Weemes (Kyle Asante 68'), Kyle Asante (A Trialist 46'), Nathan Koranteng (Lee Weemes 68')