John Johnston celebrates scoring the second goal for Nantwich Town v leaders Blyth

Nantwich Town made it 14 league games unbeaten as they drew 2-2 at home to league leaders Blyth Spartans.

The ding-dong battle at the Weaver Stadium saw both sides take the lead before they settled for a point each in front of 530 thoroughly entertained fans.

Phil Parkinson made two changes from the Nantwich side that beat Ilkeston 3-2 on Saturday.

Sean Cooke returned, replacing Wayne Riley.

Josh Hancock was recalled ahead of Joe Mwasile, who missed out through illness.

The Spartans were missing striker Robbie Dale with a knock he picked up on Saturday.

The Dabbers shaded the opening stages, as Cooke went close after five minutes, shooting just wide of the far post.

Andy White tried his luck from range, but his shot went over.

Blyth looked a threat and almost went ahead when Armstrong found Danny Maguire.

His attempt to bundle home was blocked by the Dabbers defence and cleared.

Maguire then found space just inside the penalty area, but his goal bound effort was blocked by Ben Harrison.

White’s long ranger was well saved by Spartans keeper Paul Woolston.

Then on the half hour, Blyth took the lead.

Armstrong beat the Dabbers defence down the left, advanced into the box, and bent a low finish into the far corner.

But Nantwich were not behind for long and equalised six minutes later.

Josh Hancock scores the first goal for Nantwich with a spectacular overhead kick v leaders Blyth

A free kick into the box found Hancock who showed great technique to volley a stunning overhead kick past Woolston.

The goal had lifted the home side and they were ahead three minutes into the second half.

A ball forward picked out Johnston and he twisted inside and out before curling low past Woolston.

It was his fourth for the club and his first since extending his loan from Salford City.

The Dabbers went in search of a third to kill the game.

And they had a great chance on 55 minutes when they broke with numbers.

Josh Hancock celebrates scoring the first goal for Nantwich with an overhead kick v Blyth leaders

The ball fell to Hancock, with just Woolston to beat but the keeper was quick to close down the Dabbers forward and make a smart save.

Spartans’ FA Cup hero Jarrett Rivers came on and the move had the desired effect for the league leaders.

A Maguire effort was ruled offside before they did level through a superb bit of play.

Maguire played in Armstrong behind the Dabbers defence and the latter showed composure to round Gyollai and slot home his second.

Vinny Mukendi replaced the hard-working Tom Peers up front for Nantwich, and Curtis Jones replaced Ben Harrison.

Rivers had the next chance as he drove a shot wide of the near post following good build up play on the left.

Josh Hancock on the ball v leaders Blyth

Steve Jones replaced Hancock before Johnston had a half chance as he broke down the left and cut inside, but his shot was dragged well wide.

Mukendi’s break on goal was illegally halted by Dave McTiernan who picked up a yellow card.

The Dabbers almost snatched a winner late on when Cooke picked out White in the penalty area with a perfect cross.

But White was unable to turn the ball home and ended up hand balling for a free kick.

Both teams had to settle for a deserved draw.

Nantwich Town: Dan Gyollai, Andy White, Ibou Touray, Joel Stair, Ben Harrison (Curtis Jones, 69), Sam Hall(c), John Johnston, Matt Bell, Tom Peers (Vinny Mukendi, 65), Sean Cooke, Josh Hancock (Steve Jones, 74). Unused subs: Wayne Riley, Ryan Brooke

(All pictures courtesy of Jonathan White)

John Johnston celebrates scoring the second goal for Nantwich Town v Blyth leaders

Sean Cooke prepares a free-kick

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