CHRIS Holroyd’s fifth goal of the season midway through the second half ensured that the Magpies returned home with something to show from their 600-miles’ round-trip to the Kent coast.

The ex-Wrexham striker was the man-on-the-spot to poke home a precious equaliser after high-flying Dover had taken a first-half lead. For that the hosts had Ricky Modeste - back from international duty with Greneda - to thank in what was to prove a run-of-the-mill game of few clear-cut scoring chances.

The Magpies, starting well, had the first of these when Josh O’Keefe headed over the bar from a corner and Andy Teague’s header was similarly too high before Dover took the lead from their first real attack in the 20th minute. Inih Effiong slipped a pass through to Modeste who provided a cool finish beyond Billy Crellin. But, the goal apart, Dover struggled to create first-half openings against a tight Chorley defence.

When Modeste returned the favour to Effiong soon after the break with a clever flick-on, his colleague clear on goal shot wastefully wide. ‘He’s got to score,’ lamented home boss Andy Hessenthaler after the game, ‘because if he does it’s game over. But to be honest we weren’t at the races today.’

Chorley kept plugging away and deservedly drew level after 67 minutes following a corner. O’Keefe’s driven effort was saved but not for the first time this season the opportunist Holroyd was in the right place in a crowded goalmouth to tuck home the loose ball.

And after the sides had traded half-chances without ending the stalemate Chorley were very close to a winner in the dying minutes. Substitutes Elliot Newby and Adam Blakeman combined effectively, Newby setting up a shot for Blakeman who got the ball past the keeper only to see a defender make a last-ditch clearance from the line. Manager Jamie Vermiglio praised his players’ strength of character in coming from behind to claim a point – but he thought his team could have had a little more from the match.

"I felt we were the more accomplished side and the more likely team to go on and win the game after the equaliser,’ said the Magpies boss.