Hinckley AFC 2-2 Littleton

Hinckley AFC and Littleton shared four goals in an entertaining league opener that saw the spoils shared at St John’s Park.

It was Hinckley’s second consecutive league game against Littleton after Carl Abbott’s side triumphed 5-1 at the end of last season, but this was a much more tightly contested affair.

Hinckley twice took the lead in the first Midland League Division One game of the new campaign, but were pegged back both times by their resolute visitors.

AFC made four changes to the side that were beaten by Heanor Town on Wednesday. Lee Butler and Darious Darkin both returned from injury, while Lee Thomas and Rico Taylor also came in.

It took until shortly before half time for Hinckley to net their first league goal of the season. A fine team move culminated in Sam Agar latching onto Lee Butler’s pass and coolly finishing to put his side ahead.

But Littleton were quick out of the blocks after the break, and levelled affairs just a minute into the second period. Tom Cross didn’t connect cleanly with a punch, and Dan Holloway returned the ball goalbound to equalise.

Not to be deterred, Hinckley continued to press for a second, Ryan Paddock’s downward header being tipped around the post at full stretch.

Not long after, Hinckley did find a second. Rico Taylor picked the ball up inside his own half, and went on a mazy run which culminated in his cross being diverted into his own net by Aaron Xavier.

But a resolute Littleton levelled again with fifteen minutes to go, as Connor Perry-Holmes found the bottom corner following his run.

And after that, Hinckley couldn’t fashion the chances to break down their opponents and the sides start their respective league seasons with a point apiece ahead of AFC’s trip to Stafford Town on Wednesday.

Hinckley: Tom Cross, James Williams (Mark Williams 46), Lee Thomas, Ryan Paddock, Mike Harvey, Darious Darkin, Lee Butler (Jean Kalenda 67), Peter Williams, Sam Agar, Sean Williams, Rico Taylor (Ryan Seal 76). Substitutes: Shaquille Lee, JJ Melligan

Goals: Sam Agar (40), Aaron Xavier (57, OG)

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