As with seemingly every game for the last few weeks, Harriers were forced into changes due to injury going into this one.

Brandon Hall was ruled out with a dead leg and, worse still for Colin Gordon, young stopper Tom Palmer joined him on the sidelines with a quad problem just a week after filling in for Hall so admirably at AFC Telford United.

That meant there was room in the squad for both new goalkeeping recruits signed on Friday – Birmingham City youngster Jake Weaver filling in the number one spot while Kieran Boucher was on the bench.

Ryan Johnson, after completing a three-match suspension, came back into the starting line-up at the expense of Harry Higginson who was placed among the subs.

The hosts had started brightly enough when McAlinden struck a free-kick wide and then tested goalkeeper Ramsbottom from distance, but they were rocked when, around halfway through the half, Styche prodded in a corner from close range to hand Alfreton the lead.

It almost got worse past the half-hour when Weaver needed to tip over a Johnson free-kick, Harriers then fashioning their best chance of the half when a looping ball found Ironside who’s shot at close range was diverted away.

Wilde had two wayward attempts for Town, either side of the break, before substitute Butterfield drove into the arms of Ramsbottom after being teed up by Ironside. It began a spell of pressure that saw Harriers dominate but, crucially, without many telling opportunities – Weeks striking just over and Chambers nodding a deep cross well wide.

A smart passing move, seven minutes from time, looked like it might produce an equaliser but, after being played in by Clayton-Phillips, Chambers saw his low shot saved by Ramsbottom who charged from goal to save with his feet.

In the final moments, McAlinden’s drilled cross almost found the far corner and Butterfield saw an attempt looked off the line, but Alfreton held on to see out what was just their first victory of the calendar year.

Harriers: Weaver, Vaughan, McAlinden, Heaton, Horsfall, Johnson, Penn, Weeks, Ironside, Chambers, Clayton-Phillips Not used: Alfreton: Ramsbottom, Clackstone, Wilde, Lynch, Shiels, Riley, Styche, Platt, Peniket, Johnson, Smith.

Not used: Attendance: 1,315 Referee: Lewis Smith