By Steve Sharman:
Nantwich Town moved up to fifth and made it seven unbeaten in the league despite a frustrating 1-1 draw with Corby Town at the Weaver Stadium.
Matt Bell had opened the scoring two minutes before half time, calmly slotting the ball into the net after excellent play from Joe Mwasile, but the Dabbers were pegged back in the second half after Corby were awarded a controversial penalty kick for handball against Wayne Riley.
Phil Parkinson made two changes from the draw at Sutton Coldfield last weekend as Ryan Brooke and Matt Bell returned in place of Sean Cooke and Steve Jones.
The game was preluded by a minutes silence in memory of the clubs longest serving manager, Colin Hutchinson, who died recently aged 80.
Corby had started brightly but it was the hosts who created the first opportunity as Wayne Riley volleyed narrowly wide from the edge of the box before visiting keeper Aidan Grant got down low to deny Joe Mwasile’s deflected cross.
Andy White and Ben Harrison then both fired high and wide for the Dabbers before Stefan Moore was denied by the woodwork for Corby as the striker’s shot struck the base of the post after finding himself in on goal.
It was the Steelmen who were ending the first half the better as Daniel Gyollai made a fine save to palm away Aaron Brown’s curling effort from the edge of the box.
But despite their pressure, Corby found themselves a goal down on 43 minutes as Matt Bell calmly tucked the ball into the net after Mwasile had taken advantage of some poor defending from Courtney Wildin, before squaring the ball to his team mate, who made no mistake from six yards.
The second half started with the Dabbers finding the net but referee Thomas Parsons disallowed Ryan Brooke’s header for a foul on Grant.
Mwasile was causing Corby’s defence all sorts of problems and after beating several men played the ball to Tom Peers who saw his curling effort go inches past the far post.
But in the 63rd minute Corby were awarded a controversial penalty after referee Parsons had deemed the ball to have struck Riley’s arm despite having to consult with his linesman.
Former Aston Villa man Stefan Moore stepped up send Gyollai the wrong way and bring the visitors level.
Nantwich responded immediately and Brooke was inches from scoring as his chip over Grant went agonisingly close of the far post.
The visitors then were lucky not to be down to ten men as Mwasile was the recipient of a poor challenge from Connor Kennedy who walked away with just a booking.
Corby seemed content with a point and were happy to sit back as Peers’ attempted lob went over the crossbar after some hesitant defending.
Matt Bell saw his effort from the edge of the box fly past the post late on, before Peers’ shot was blocked after a goal mouth scramble with his effort ending up in the grateful arms of Grant as the visitors held.
The Dabbers are next in action next Saturday away at Hednesford Town with a 3pm KO.
Nantwich Town: Gyollai, J. Stair, White, Harrison, C. Jones, Hall (c), Brooke (Cotterell 77′), Riley, Peers, Bell, Mwasile.
Subs not used: Touray, Howell, Griggs, Burzynski.
Corby Town: Grant, Smith (Anton 17), Wildin, Kennedy, Brown, Lee, D. Bell, Milnes, Moore (Iaciofano), Trainer (c), Crawford (Leslie 62′).
Subs not used: Osei-Bonsu, R. Bell.
Referee: T. Parsons.
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