Bucks beaten by Chester then pegged back by Hereford over Easter

A huge visiting contingent swelled the holiday crowd to the biggest attendance at Buxton for two years as play-off hopefuls Chester produced a convincing second-half display to deservedly take full points in a 4-1 win.

The Bucks had no answer to a visitors' purple patch of three goals in 12 minutes from the hour onwards. Yet, in a breathtaking opening to the contest, it was the hosts who began in fine style, scoring after just 100 seconds.

Bolton loanee Ben Andreucci again showed his promise with a superb, 18-yard ground shot across 'keeper Wyll Stanway to find the net.

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However, the visitors responded immediately as skipper Declan Weeks flicked a left-flank, low cross into goal at the near-post; two attacks, two goals inside the first four minutes.

It was a surprise that there was no further score before the interval. Andreucci pulled off a fine shot on the turn, narrowly clearing the angle of post and bar, while Ben Tollitt looked a likely scorer for Chester at the Railway End. He rounded stand-in 'keeper Aleks Petrovic, who was making his NLN debut, but was too close to the by-line to finish.

As the Cestrians gradually established midfield control, they created more scoring chances. Home centre-back Max Hunt made a superb saving tackle to deny striker Tom Peers, then the Bucks left-back was close to an own goal when clearing a left-wing cross under pressure.

Immediately after the interval, Andreucci again seemed Buxton's most likely source of a second goal, making another clever penalty-box turn only to be outnumbered, but it was no surprise that it was Chester who scored next, Harrison Burke netting from eight yards after forging forward powerfully.

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It became 3-1 just four minutes later as a fortunate rebound helped to set up Adam Thomas for a confident, 15-yards finish, then Peers, with a speculative, long-range effort from the right, put the outcome beyond any doubt, condemning the last 20 minutes largely to anti-climax.

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Nonetheless, victory still leaves Chester outside the play-off positions and with plenty to do in their last four fixtures, while injury-hit Buxton, lacking six front-line players, are firmly lodged in mid-table without a win in four.

*Buxton recovered from Friday’s loss to then earn a 2-2 draw at Hereford on Easter Monday, although they let a two-goal lead slip and conceded an equaliser in stoppage time.

Diego De Girolamo fired home the opener in first-half stoppage time to put the Bucks in front, before an own goal doubled the lead on 70 minutes as Kyle Howkins inadvertently mis-directed a back pass past his goalkeeper Curtis Pond and the ball rolled into the net.

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Hereford pulled one back on 76 minutes as Andy Williams capitalised on a poor back pass and rounded Aleks Petrovic before putting the ball in the net.

And it was in stoppage time that Hereford got level, as Williams struck again to earn a share of the points.