Nantwich Town and Warrington Town played out an entertaining 1-1 draw in the latest Cheshire derby at the Optimum Pay Stadium.

The injuries had been racking up for the Dabbers in recent weeks, meaning Prince Haywood had to start at right back against a strong attack, and he did well to settle any nerves with a couple of good clearances early on.

It was the visitors, though who did start sharper, Matthew Grivosti shooting wide in the first 5 minutes.

Grivosti then picked the pocket of David Vaughan who was back in midfield, again though his radar was faulty and his shot didn’t trouble Matt Gould.

The sloppiness reared its head again as the ball was given away to Sean Williams who walloped a shot that was not that far away from the top corner.

After a good punch clear from Gould, Nantwich were forced to become more alert as the early pressure from Warrington was not sustainable. Dan Cockerline tried to get a shot away from a Sean Cooke pull-back but the Yellows were well organised and blocked.

Not long after, the opening goal arrived in bizarre circumstances. The ball was looped back in after a Cooke free kick got cleared, it was headed high up in the air off a Warrington head but keeper Dan Atherton, who could see it all the way, managed to let the ball fall through his arms and present captain Joel Stair with the easiest of tap-ins.

This lead gained against the run of play spurred the Dabbers to play their best football of the half, Cockerline went himself from outside the box and had Atherton scrambling as it zipped past the post.

Connor Heath then tried to repeat his heroics from the last game against Warrington but sliced an effort into the side netting as the Dabbers went in ahead at the break.

Both Cooke and Mwasile tried to double the lead early in the second half but neither were able to get their efforts on target.

The game hinged on a moment on the hour mark when Josh Langley had to be substituted after some treatment for what looked like a head injury.

Tommy Montefiori came on in his place, and with a number of defensive injuries Dave Cooke decided to put Cockerline at centre back.

This left a back four of Haywood, Cockerline, Stair and Troy Bourne, only one of which you could say was in their best position and two in very unfamiliar positions.

And it was this that Warrington took little time to expose. After sub Josh Amis hooked over from a decent position, the makeshift backline was opened up by a ball down the right channel, it was pulled down nicely and given to Josh Buckley, who needed no invitation to finish tidily past Gould and take himself to joint top scorer in the league.

Cockerline then picked up a booking for a flailing arm on Buckley, at this point Dave Cooke responded by putting on Jacob Edwards at left-back, moving Cockerline back up front and Bourne into the centre.

This settled things down, and even though Warrington tried to apply more pressure, few chances of note were created and the points were shared.

The Dabbers travel next to Ashton on Saturday, and would surely have taken 5 points from games against South Shields, FC United and Warrington before that run of games if it was offered to them.


Nantwich Town: Gould, Haywood, Bourne, Stair, Langley (Montefiori, 62), Vaughan, Heath, Jarrett, Cockerline, Cooke, Mwasile (Edwards, 75)

Subs not used: Miller, Pope, Terry

Goal: Stair (23)

Warrington Town: Atherton, Baillie, Clarke, Harris, Roberts, Duggan, Reid (Hough, 86), Williams, Buckley, Dixon (Duffy, 68), Grivosti (Amis, 46)

Subs not used: Mols, Regan

Goal: Buckley (71)

Attendance: 319