Proud Alfreton Town boss Billy Heath praised the tenacity of his ‘tired players’ after they ended the season with a 2-2 draw at home to Chester.
It was the fourth game in a matter of days for the Reds, following their Derbyshire Senior Cup win in midweek, as they ended the season in 15th spot.
And, despite being reduced to ten men when Tom Allen was sent off, Alfreton twice came from behind to get a creditable draw.
“l thought first half we looked really, really tired - it was always going to be difficult today with four games in a short space of time.
“It’s ridiculous, but you have to finish the season off and there were some players that were very, very tired before we even kicked a ball.
“We changed the shape early on and we looked the better team without really imposing ourselves on the game - then it all happened second half for us and l think we deserved something out of the game for sheer desire and tenacity.
“l don’t think anyone can say it wasn’t for the want of trying today - basically we were just shattered, but once Tommy Allan got sent off it sort of like vitalised us in a way.
“We dug in a little bit more and l thought we deserved a point - we put bodies on the line at the end and in the last minute Platty [Tom Platt] and Martin Riley have kept them out with vital clearances.
“Josh Wilde is the best left-back in this league - simple as that - he’s a fantastic player who could easily play higher up - easily - and it was quite fitting that he should score both goals, because he’s been a consistent performer throughout the season - his constant performances have been good.
“Looking at the season as a whole we could have done better - we should have done better - there have been plusses - we had a decent FACup run which netted the club some finances and beaten some big teams away.”
The visitors took the lead in the 13th minute through Akwasi Asante.
Tom Allen was red-carded on 62 minutes for two yellows, before Alfreton levelled through Josh Wilde three minutes later.
However Chester regained the lead through Waring on 68 minutes, his header stemming from a Roberts’ cross, then Matty Waters missed an absolute sitter after Reds’ keeper Nicholson had gone on an impromptu walkabout.
Alfreton deserved their second equaliser when defender Wilde calmly slotted home from around 20 yards, following good work by sub Morgan Brough on the right.