It is often said that the mark of a quality side can be measured by how well they respond to setbacks.

And after Chester had surrendered their unbeaten record at Spennymoor two days earlier, they showed their powers of recovery with an accomplished 3-1 victory at Curzon Ashton to resume their promotion bid.

Goals from Matty Hughes, Akwasi Asante and Kevin Roberts saw the Blues clinch their fifth victory of the National League North campaign and recapture third place in the table.

With centre back Danny Livesey available before serving a one-match suspension for his acrimonious sending off in the north east, the visitors named an unchanged starting eleven.

Former Manchester City youth player George Glendon made his second start for the visitors, deployed in central midfield alongside Scott Burton.

Curzon were without their own influential central midfielder - former Wrexham captain Rob Evans, who sustained a fractured ankle in the narrow defeat to Guiseley at the weekend.

The visitors went ahead after just five minutes when the lively Joel Taylor cut inside and found Glendon, whose clipped delivery was flicked on by Simon Grand and prodded home by Hughes.

It was a poacher's finish from the number 10, who has excelled since returning from a serious knee injury and continually threatened the hosts' back line in the opening stages.

The advantage was almost doubled on 10 minutes when Asante muscled himself into space and saw his shot blocked before Glendon's volley from an acute angle flashed just past the post.

Having been dominated in the opening exchanges, Curzon settled into the contest and it took a well-timed block from Grand to thwart a stinging drive from home skipper Nicholas Wroe.

Grand clutched his midriff following the intervention, with the Curzon players' handball claims waved away by referee Jon Kenny.

With no spot-kick forthcoming, Curzon upped the tempo of their attacks and drew level on 21 minutes when forward Matthew Regan rose unopposed to head home Andrew Halls' cross.

Defensively solid for much of the campaign so far, the Blues back line took collective leave of their senses as Regan had time to pick his spot with a header that looped beyond keeper Russ Griffiths.

The leveller sparked Mark Bradshaw's men into life as they mounted a series of attacks in quick succession to pressurise the Blues back line.

Regan went close to adding a second with another header soon after, before midfielder Jack Banister fired wide with a well-struck snapshot from the edge of the box.

Possession was dominated by the home side as the half wore on, with Chester forced to play deep in their defensive third.

Asante attempted to inject some urgency into the Blues attack as he pressurised Cameron Mason into a rushed clearance and almost punished the Curzon stopper's indecision.

But as half-time approached, Chester's play grew increasingly ragged and were arguably fortunate to be level at the break.

However, it was the visitors who seized the initiative within a minute of the restart when Brad Jackson darted down the right and delayed his cut-back from the byline before finding Asante who rifled into the bottom corner to make it 2-1.

Energised by a goal that had seemed unlikely to come at times, Chester played with renewed belief and netted a third on 51 minutes.

And they had their full-backs to thank for it as Joel Taylor's whipped corner was headed home by Roberts - the right back's first goal since rejoining the Blues in the summer.

Sean Miller went close to a quick reply when he flashed a brilliant delivery across the face of the Chester goal but it lacked a decisive touch from a Curzon team mate.

Having earned some breathing space in the contest, Chester's confidence flowed back as their incursions into Curzon territory carried increasing menace.

First Glendon drove forward and unleashed a shot which drifted just wide, before Jackson's well-struck effort from the edge of the box was also just off target.

The chances kept coming as Hughes' superb 71st minute curling effort was brilliantly turned around the post by Mason.

A triple attack-minded substitution from Blues bosses Anthony Johnson and Bernard Morley saw George Waring, Iwan Murray and Danny Elliott introduced for the final 20 minutes.

All looked hungry to get on the scoresheet, but it was Waring who spurned the most presentable opening - firing wide from inside the box when well-placed.