John Sheridan brought Jack Hunt back into the side after his one-match ban expired, and went with the "away forward-line" of Davies and Bowery, with Jack Lester being rested to the bench. There was a welcome return to the 18 for Gregor Robertson, a fortnight shy of a year after breaking his leg.
With both sets of fans is fine voice the home side kicked off on an opening five that was even in terms of possession and intent. Stevenage won a corner off Griffiths on 9 and Ford won a near-post header to clear; Davis picked up a long ball and took it on but was forced wide; he managed to find Bowery, whose shot was blocked after he ran out of options.
The first fifteen passed without either keeper being tested. Hunt crossed on 18 and Whitaker might perhaps have done better pulling the ball back from the edge of the 6-yard box, but it indicated that The Spireites were showing a bit of quality, having opted for a short-passing game after trying longer stuff to begin with. The home side came back and were presented with a free header after Mousinho kept the ball in play but Holroyd contrived to direct it straight at the grateful Mattis, who blocked.
Whitaker took Chesterfield's first corner on 26, short to Allott; the return was cleared by Holroyd. Lee Saved from Laird's cross-cum-shot on 35. Three minutes from the end of the half Lee was forced into a fine save from Long's shot, at the expense of a corner; that constituted the hardest that either keeper was forced to work in the first period. O'Shea shot over from 25 on 44.
Halftime: Stevenage 0 Chesterfield 0. Attendance: 3,556 (record FL gate at Broadhall Way)
Mousinho provided an early scare, putting the ball over for O'Shea on 47, but the forward didn't connect and the ball went out close to the corner flag.The home side won a corner and employed their usual tactic of lining up outside the box; Lee was not distracted, though, and caught the cross cleanly. Whitaker drew his man well before finding Talbot on the right, on 53, and his cross was put out for a corner. Long headed the flag kick away. Shots from Hunt and Allott were inadvertently blocked by Bowery and Whitaker as The Spireites posted a response to the early 'Boro pressure.
The boisterous travelling support thought their side had taken the lead on 57 when Davies headed Bowery's fine cross into the side-netting. The home side won a corner on 66 and Talbot headed the ball away. Jack Lester entered the game on 67, with Jordan Bowery making way. Talbot controlled the ball with his head and chest before drawing a foul from Bostwick on 69, some 30 yards out and dead centre. Davies' shot was blocked by a Stevenage player racing out of the wall.
Ashton was booked for a foul on Lester on 71, five yards closer than the last one. Day gathered Ford's header from Whitaker's kick with some ease. Boro's fourth corner of the afternoon was taken by Long on 74 and it sailed straight into Lee's grateful arms. Davies and Laird became involved off the ball. Chesterfield won a corner after Griffiths' shot was blocked and possession was retained from it; Davies' cross was hacked away and continued pressure forced another corner, on 78. Allott's shot went well wide of the goal. Niven ran into the back of Laird and went down on 81; the referee rather perversely interpreted Niven's fall as a dive, and booked him for it.
Boro made a double substitution on 82, replacing Long and O'Shea with Winn and May. Roberts conceded a corner for Chesterfield which found the offside Davies, whose shot hit the side netting. Laird pumped a free kick into the box on 87 and Lee was unfairly bundled towards the net to relieve the danger.
Into time added on, Chesterfield drove forward through Niven, whose 30-yard shot was taken by Day.
Full time: 0-0.