TWO goals from Anthony Dudley helped Chester ease their way to a straightforward 4-1 victory over Ashton United as the Blues extended their unbeaten run in the Vanarama National League to nine games.

In total contrast to Saturday’s feisty affair against Alfreton, a chilly crowd at the Swansway Stadium watched the visitors barely put up a fight as the Blues enjoyed a far more relaxing evening thanks to a strangely compliant performance from the Manchester-based outfit.

Perhaps the effort to actually get to the ground had all been too much for Ashton’s players with a troublesome M56 ensuring the match was delayed for 15 minutes to allow for them to arrive.

With United’s minds still somewhere around Frodsham come kick off, their opponents took instant advantage with a goal coming after just two minutes following some excellent work from Craig Mahon down the left seeing the Irishman reach the byline and square an inviting low cross for Dudley to side foot home from six yards.

With Plan A out of the window, Ashton seemed prepared to let the hosts have as much of the ball as they wanted as Mahon and the returning Iwan Murray enjoyed the freedom to dictate play with barely a tackle or snap of the ankles forthcoming.

Forays into the Chester half were rare and when one did come thanks to a slaloming dribble from Matthew Chadwick it was superbly snuffed out by Simon Grand’s excellent challenge.

A second for the Blues felt inevitable and it finally came just after the half hour when a Dan Mooney corner found the head of Grand whose knock down was bundled in by Howson from close range.

An Ashton revival in the second half looked unlikely despite a double substitution at the break which saw Jordan Sangha and Harrison Holgate come on for Dom McHale and Liam Tomsett.

Instead it remained Chester who looked odds on to increase their lead and on the hour the Blues made the game safe with the goal of the game as Dudley controlled another Grand knock down from a Mooney corner with his back to goal before swivelling and unleashing a fine volley past Luke Pilling to complete his brace.

With any fight left in Ashton long since gone, the win turned into a rout on 71 minutes and it was a brilliant delivery again from Mooney which found Mahon at the far post who nodded home.

A late consolation goal in added time for the visitors from Bradley Jackson blotted the copybook somewhat but this was as routine as a win gets ahead of far harder test against FA Trophy holders Brackley on Saturday