REPORT | Alfreton Town 2-2 Chester

    Chester were forced to settle for an opening day point in an entertaining fixture at Alfreton Town.

    Strikes from Kurt Willoughby and Joe Lynch had the yellows in a good position, but a Tom Denton brace meant it finished all square.

    It was a lively first half which started with a chance at both ends. Moments after Harry Tyrer made a good save from Dayle Southwell, Willoughby was released by Declan Weeks but his shot was palmed over by George Willis.

    Nevertheless, the Blues number nine wasn’t to be denied on the quarter of an hour mark, as Weeks’ inswinging cross was inch perfect for Willoughby to glance into the corner.

    One became two just seven minutes after. Weeks again providing the assist, clipping forward a pass for Lynch to brilliantly bullet a volley into the net.

    The deficit was halved moments later in a manic 12 minutes of first half action. Dwayne Wiley headed a corner back across the face for Denton to turn it in.

    Just before the interval it was nearly 3-1 as Kole Hall’s dangerous low ball in was inches away from the foot of Willoughby.

    Billy Heath’s men should have been level on the hour mark when a long throw dropped to skipper Conor Branson inside the box – but he steered the effort wide.

    Down the other end, McIntyre’s men still looked a threat.

    First, Darren Stephenson found Weeks who was denied by Willis after twisting and turning inside the area. Then Stephenson himself drove forward and rifled a shot just wide of the mark.

    In between these two openings, Bailey Hobson flashed an attempt just beyond Tyrer’s right hand post. The hosts piled on the pressure late on in search of an equaliser, as Lewis Whitham wasted a glorious chance inside the box.

    But they did score in the first minute of injury time when Denton’s header found the net, despite the best efforts of the diving Tyrer.

    CHESTER: Tyrer, Roberts (Coulton 39), Burke, Williams, Heywood, Kenyon, Weeks, Lynch (Dudley 84), Thomas (Stephenson 46), Hall, Willoughby.

    SUBS NOT USED: Stanway, Murray.

    SCORERS: Denton 28 & 90+1; Willoughby 16, Lynch 23.

    ATTENDANCE: 724.