West Ham United began their pre-season tour of Austria with a 1-1 draw against SVL Flavia Solva on Wednesday evening.
A Jack Collison penalty saw Gianfranco Zola's side share the spoils at the Roman Stadium - named in honour of the nearby historic Roman settlement of Flavia Solva, which was decreed to be a municipium, or second-class city, by the Emperor Vespasian in 70AD.
The modern-day Austrians, promoted to their country's Third Division last season, proved to be plucky and determined opponents on a hot evening in the picturesque village of Wagna, taking an early lead before being pegged back by Collison's spot-kick.
A sunny night was further brightened by the sight of Scott Parker completing his first full training session of the pre-season following his recovery from a groin injury before kick-off.
Gianfranco Zola named a young side, with only full-backs Julien Faubert and Herita Ilunga aged over 21. Austria Under-19 midfielder Georg Grasser was handed a start in his homeland after impressing in the 2-1 win at Grays Athletic on Sunday.
Fellow Academy graduates Marek Stech, Jordan Spence, Bondz N'Gala, Jack Collison, Ollie Lee, Anthony Edgar and Zavon Hines also started, while Savio made his first appearance of the pre-season.
West Ham, captained by DR Congo left-back Ilunga, made a bright start only to fall behind to a 16th-minute strike from Mario Ploschnik. The midfielder saw his first effort cannon back off the post, but reacted quickest to fire the rebound past Marek Stech.
Having fallen behind, the visitors upped their game and had already gone close on a number of occasions when Collison levelled matters from the penalty spot on the half-hour mark after Zavon Hines had been tripped.
Zola rang the changes at half-time, introducing Wales defenders Danny Gabbidon and James Collins, who took over the captaincy, along with England's Kieron Dyer. Hungary Under-21 goalkeeper Peter Kurucz and homegrown stars Josh Payne and Junior Stanislas were also introduced at the interval, with Stech, Faubert, Ilunga, Grasser, Collison and Savio making way.
The alterations brought about a special moment for close friends Collins and Gabbidon, who acted as best men at each other's weddings. The pair, who joined West Ham on the same day from Cardiff City in July 2005, last lined up together in the Barclays Premier Reserve League South fixture against Portsmouth at Havant and Waterlooville on 23 January 2008.
The wholesale changes failed to upset the Hammers' rhythm, however, as Stanislas came close to putting the tourists ahead seven minutes after the break. The winger and Hines were then denied by a spectacular double save from home goalkeeper Harald Letnik.
West Ham pressed hard for the victory in the closing stages, while the Austrians also caused a few moments of concern in the Hammers' rearguard. However, neither side could find a winner as honours ended even as darkness fell.
The Hammers will return to action on Saturday, when they take on German Cup winners and UEFA Cup finalists Werder Bremen in Bad Waltersdorf. The match could see Chile international Luis Jimenez make his West Ham debut after the 25-year-old met up with his new team-mates for the first time on Monday.
The game could also see Parker Robert Green, Matthew Upson, Carlton Cole and Luis Boa Morte make their first pre-season appearances of the summer. The latter quartet were given extra time-off to recover from their international commitments. All five were at the ground to cheer on their colleagues on Wednesday evening, taking part in a training session with first-team coach Steve Clarke before the game.
West Ham United: Stech (Kurucz 46), Faubert (Collins 46), Ilunga (Gabbidon 46), Spence, N'Gala, Grasser (Dyer 46), Lee, Collison (Payne 46), Savio (Stanislas 46), Edgar, Hines
SVL Flavia Solva: Letnik, Kammerhofer, Zach, Sobl, Weber (Bruckler 64), Ploschnik, Hutter (Hierzer 65), Rottensteiner (Jagonak 80), Statthaler, Macher, Andre