Nantwich Town welcomed National League side Altrincham to the Optimum Pay Stadium on Tuesday night as both sides continued to prepare for their upcoming league campaigns.

The game got off to a frantic start as the visitors had their first opportunity after just three minutes when former Crewe Alex man Ryan Colclough danced into the box, before dragging his shot wide of the near left post. Colclough was causing real issues for the Nantwich defence and came close again in the 11th minute as he picked up the ball on the right side before curling a strike towards the far left corner but Nantwich keeper Cameron Terry managed to claw it out as he expertly pushed it around the post.

The hosts began the game on the back foot but they managed to muster an attack of their own as Sean Cooke bought the ball forward from midfield and then set up James Lawrie to strike from the edge of the box but the keeper saved well down low to his left. In the 20th minute, Altrincham fullback Joel Senior went on a mazy run into the Nantwich box before pulling the trigger and forcing another excellent save out of Cameron Terry in the Nantwich Town goal.

After a fast start, the game soon calmed down as both sides began to pass the ball around get to grips with the game. A chance-less ten minutes was bought to an end by Altrincham’s Sumer signing Marcus Dinanga who had been a handful all game and when he received the ball with his back to goal on the half hour mark, he turned well but could only shoot straight at Cameron Terry.

Two minutes later, Dinanga opened the scoring after he latched onto a through-ball from former Dabber Josh Hancock before dinking the on-rushing keeper to put his side in the lead.

On the stroke of half time The Robins doubled their lead. Ryan Colclough managed to work space for a shot on the edge of the box and as he took aim, His effort took a wicked deflection off Caspar Hughes which wrong-footed the keeper who stood no chance as the ball flew into his net.

At the break The Dabbers had been well in the game, However the visitors quality shone through and they were deservedly in the lead.

As is the case with most Pre-Season friendlies, both sides made an abundance of changes at the break so the second period took a while to get going whilst the newly introduced players found their feet and got to grips with the pace of the game. The first opportunity of the game came in the 59th minute when another former Dabber, Matty Kosylo raced down the left side and got into the box. When he got to the by-line he pulled it back but thankfully for Nantwich, James Lawrie was there to clear the ball away from danger.

In the 65th minute the opposition almost gifted the Dabbers a goal as a long ball from Louis Danquah looked pretty regulation for Atrincham defender Richie Sutton to head back to his keeper. However Sutton’s header was weak and intercepted by Callum Saunders who beat the on rushing keeper to the ball, However his second touch was too big and he was intercepted before he could fire home into the empty net.

With ten minutes to go, The visitors added a third as half time substitute Dan Mooney cut inside from the left side before beating Nantwich’s sub keeper Jaqhuil Hill at his near post.

The referee blew his whistle to signal the end of the game. Dave Cooke would have been happy with his sides showing, They certainly didn’t look out of place against a very good National League side in Altrincham.

The Dabbers have two more pre-season games against Leek Town (31/07) and Chester FC (07/08) before their season begins with a visit from Stalybridge Celtic on Saturday 14th August.