IT was honours even when Cheshire League leaders Congleton Vale Rovers visited a windswept Barrows Farm on Saturday.

Billinge, who had drawn with second-placed Crewe last week, fancied their chances before the game, were the better footballing side on the day and were ultimately disappointed with the draw at the final whistle; especially after leading for over 50 minutes.

Credit, however, has to go to both sides who somehow managed to play football with a driving, gale-force wind present throughout the 90 minutes.

It was The Storks that took the game to the visitors as Marios Avraam almost got his shot off, in the first minute, after a powerful run before the same player nearly got onto a beautiful through-ball from Zak Riley - that Vale keeper Cameron Phelps gathered well.

Moments later Josh Thornton saw his cross/shot go narrowly wide for the visitors and in the 10th minute, and helped by a whistle-happy referee, Congleton had two free-kicks on the edge of the Billinge area but The Storks defence held firm.

The wind was making it difficult to play the longer ball as, what looked to be superb passes by Aaron Rice and Riley just ran on when it seemed that Avraam and Rob Lamont respectively would get on the end of them.

There was almost a goal and then a scare for The Storks on the 17th minute when their combative defender Nathan Ogden almost scored with a diving header.

Unfortunately, he banged his head on the floor as well and seemed to be out cold.

However after a short delay for treatment he was deemed okay to continue and was soon back into action producing a pinpoint through-ball that Nial Dawson couldn’t quite control when it looked like he would be in for goal.

With Billinge cranking up the pressure they were deservedly ahead on 26 minutes.

Richie Allen won the ball in midfield fed, the excellent on the day, James Dagnall who beat his man and crossed the ball.

Allen dummied the cross, Danny Murphy hassled the Congleton defender who could only knock the ball to Lamont who fired home from ten yards.

In the second half Congleton began to get a foothold into the game and they drew level on 78 minutes.

Whilst the finish from 25 yards by Ryan Read was absolutely fantastic, The Storks would bemoan that the goal came from a Billinge corner, a breakaway and the fact that they didn’t clear the ball when they could.

As it was Read took full advantage, hit the ball superbly giving Kai McAlister, in the Billinge goal, no chance.

It was tough on the Billinge defence and McAlister in particular who only had one other shot to save as he tipped a shot from Oliver Griffiths over the bar.

The final 12 minutes plus stoppage time was played out without any further incident as both teams settled for a share of the spoils.

The result meant that Billinge are now unbeaten in six games but manager Wayne Wardle was a little disappointed saying: “I’m not sure we did enough to win the game but when you’re ahead with 12 minutes to go and seemingly under no pressure you like to think that you will see it out.

“Unfortunately their lad’s got a worldie.

“The weather played a big part and it was a battle at times but you can’t fault our lads work rate, desire and commitment.

“It’s frustrating as I feel we could have got six points from the last two games, against the top two clubs, but we are progressing each game and are on the way to being a very decent side.

Next week Billinge are without a game as their opponents Crewe are in cup action.

They are next at home on Saturday 25 January when Broadheath Central visit Barrows Farm for a 2pm kick-off.