The Blues were forced to settle for a point at the Deva Stadium this afternoon in a dramatic six goal thriller against Leamington.
Matty Waters’ 89th minute free kick shared the spoils in a game that ebbed and flowed.
Leamington had the lead twice, at 1-0 and 3-2, thanks to Josh March and Kaiman Anderson. But the Academy Graduates Waters and James Jones had got the Blues square.
George Glendon had bagged his first Chester goal to make it 2-1, before Jack Edwards’ header moments later pegged the Blues back.
Anthony Johnson and Bernard Morley made five changes from Tuesday’s Emirates FA Cup exit.
Jones’ return into the team was enforced, with Danny Livesey ruled out due to injury. Also into the starting line up were Joel Taylor – back from a knock – as well as Anthony Dudley, Matty Hughes and Akwasi Asante.
Gary Roberts, George Waring, Craig Mahon and Danny Elliott all dropped to the bench.
The Blues started the game slowly – against a side who had lost their last two league games prior to this match. Leamington had the first half chance, with Jones having to be alert to block Kaiman Anderson’s effort.
But the warning signs turned into an opening goal on the quarter hour mark. Junior English’s long throw was flicked into the path of Brakes’ top scorer Josh March who turned the ball beyond Russ Griffiths.
Nevertheless, Chester’s response was lightning quick. Taylor’s corner was inch perfect to match the run of Salford City loanee Jones – who nodded in his maiden goal for 2019/20.
Paul Holleran’s side continued to threaten though and won a penalty on 30 minutes when March was dragged down by the busy Jones. March took the responsibility but dragged his penalty wide of the post.
Half chances came and went for Brad Jackson and George Carline at either end, as we went in all square at the interval.
It took just 14 seconds from the break for the Blues to hit the front for the first time in this encounter. Joel Taylor worked well with Anthony Dudley, who laid the ball off for Glendon to strike home his first Deva goal from 20 yards.
But the game continued to sway and Leamington were back level less than three minutes later when Jack Edwards nodded the ball into the top corner of the net.
The Brakes looked to gain the momentum as Anderson dragged wide, but the second in the table Seals grabbed the initiative.
Matty’s Waters and then Hughes both dragged shots wide from inside the box – as the Harry Mac looked to roar the Blues to a fifth successive home league win.
However, they were undone by a sucker punch with 12 to play. A route one ball forward by keeper Jake Weaver bounced, was not dealt with by the Chester defensive unit, and Kaiman Anderson snuck in to toepoke the ball past Griffiths and into the net.
This crazy game was never going to end without drama though – as Waters kept his composure to fire a perfect free kick in off the underside of the bar from 19 yards out. A sublime goal to ensure the spoils were shared.
CHESTER: Griffiths, Waters, Jones, Grand, Taylor, Jackson, Glendon, Burton, Dudley, Hughes (Waring 68), Asante.
SUBS NOT USED: G Roberts, Murray, Mahon.
SCORERS: Jones 18, Glendon 46, Waters 89; March 15, Edwards 49, Anderson 78.