STRIKER Sam Molyneux came back to haunt his old club to secure a 1-1 draw for Rhyl at Gresford Athletic.

The talented forward joined the Lilywhites from the Clappers Lane side last month, and his late leveller ensured both sides had something to show from their efforts after an entertaining affair in blustery conditions.

Eddie Maurice-Jones’ side moved to within one point of second placed Flint Town United and ten behind leaders Airbus Broughton ahead of their next Huws Gray Alliance contest at the Silkmen on Saturday (2.30pm).

The Lilies’ opened the contest with the wind with them and found it difficult to implement their free-flowing passing game in the opening exchanges, with their first chance falling to Gareth Partridge on 12 minutes, who fired wide.

Chances were few and far between in the first period for the away side, with James Murphy going close on 32 minutes and Molyneux unable to steer an effort past Reece Airey soon after.

The second period saw the home side reduced to ten men on 67 minutes when Tom Freeman was dismissed for a two-footed challenge on former Gresford skipper Max Pete, but this did not deter them from taking the lead when Sam Pilkington fired past Rory Crowther following a surging midfield run with 72 gone.

This seemed to spark the Lilies’ into life, and they got themselves back into the contest after 81 minutes when some intricate play from Mike Pritchard teed up Molyneux, who made no mistake with the finish to secure a share of the spoils.

Maurice-Jones, said: “The conditions were really tough and it was a frustrating game really.

“It took a while for us to adapt to the wind and we started to play long ball more than the short and sharp passing which is when we cause more problems.

“I thought we let Gresford off in the first half but I thought we dominated the second and I asked the lads to be brave and take risks.

“I asked them to respond when we went a goal down and they did that well to get back into the game, and the next two weeks will determine where we will end up at the end of the season.

“We have come on leaps and bounds since the start and we are not the finished article yet, but it is all about how we finish now.”