Local rivals Kimberley MW and Selston came together at the Stag Ground on Wednesday night for the first time in the East Midlands Counties League and left with honours even in a 1-1 draw.
With both teams just three points from the top of the table and boasting almost identical records so far, the tie was hotly anticipated.
Selston settled the quickest and penned the home side back within the first quarter but didn’t create much that was clear cut.
One corner which Miners keeper Joss Hourd-Lee dealt with in less than convincing fashion was the only moment of danger that the early pressure brought.
Despite this early pressure from the visitors, the home side began to build more and more pressure themselves. A number of corners and free kicks increased pressure on Selston and Mason Frizelle was gifted a free header just three yards from goal which the defender managed to put wide of the post.
The aerial bombardment continued to give Selston concerns. Following a foul on halfway, a deep free kick again proved difficult to deal with and after several attempts at prising open a chance, Jordan Alls turned smartly but hit the outside of the post from 15 yards.
The Parishioners broke away directly after and following good play from Dominic Airey and Keenan Layton a corner was won. Selston skipper Ben Moore delivered and this time Kimberley failed to deal with the ball in the area and Selston top scorer, Carl Moore, hooked home following a blocked shot to give his side the lead, this on 36 minutes.
Kimberley continued to press and create pressure with their aerial threat, from another corner Selston failed to clear their lines convincingly and Grant Tobin finished emphatically from the corner of the area, giving Selston stopper Jake Simpson no chance.
The second half was more open with both sides creating chances. Aaron Mitchell joined Frizell in seeing a chance, courtesy of a free header, being spurned when he headed wide form six yards.
Jamie Renshaw then saved the visitors when Lee Day did well wide left and rolled across the goal line with Renshaw getting there just ahead of Tom Dale, the defender injured in the process of denying a tap in for the Kimberley man.
Selston got a hold of the ball for a spell with Kane Hempshall and Rory Davies linking neatly to progress up the pitch and then feed Ben Moore in the centre of the park. The skipper spotted Gregory’s run from the right wing and slipped a very clever ball into the winger, but his right footed shot fizzed just past the post.
Airey then had a great effort saved by Hourd-Lee when he controlled a corner, spun quickly and volleyed left footed, the Kimberley keeper earning the praise from all in the ground for the stop.
Other half chances came and went. Mitchell had the best of them all but headed wide again unmarked at a corner and could only hold his head in his hands after his miss.
Honours finished even with Kimberley probably feeling slightly more miffed at dropping two points given home advantage and three glaring missed chances.
This was a closely-fought contest worthy of the position of both sides, and each team retain their respective positions of sixth and seventh in the table.
Selston welcome Stapenhill to the Parish on Saturday whilst Kimberley travel to Arnold Town.