AN enthralling game ended all square as the spoils were shared between Oxford United and Luton Town.

The Hatters had not visited the Kassam Stadium for more than six years, but after this hopefully the wait for the next clash will not take so long.

Johnny Mullins's strike just before the break cancelled out Jayden Stockley's opener, but that only scratched the surface of an eventful game played in an atmosphere which crackled throughout.

It was the least United's positive performance merited and they had chances to win it, particularly in a dominant spell in the second half before high-flying Luton finished strongly.

But while the home fans did not get the long-awaited win they craved, they were richly entertained by two teams who gave everything.

Alex MacDonald came straight in for his debut as one of two changes from the side which started the 2-0 win at Stevenage a week earlier.

Josh Ruffels was also in the line-up, as Danny Rose dropped to the bench and Andy Whing missed out altogether.

Before kick-off both sets of fans paid their respects to former United secretary Jim Hunt, who died aged 91 on Monday, with a minute's applause.

The pitch passed an inspection in the morning and while the surface was not ideal, when play got under way United were able to move the ball well at times.

Luton, backed by a large travelling contingent, forged the first chance, on six minutes.

Shaun Whalley's deep cross found its way to Ryan Hall, whose shot was smartly blocked by goalkeeper Ryan Clarke.

The ball looped to Stockley, whose follow-up shot hit a defender and flew wide.

United showed plenty of promise in possession, but it took them almost half an hour to inflict damage on Luton's physical back four.

Callum O'Dowda continued his excellent run as his pace and attacking intent worried the visitors.

On 28 minutes he chased down a Danny Hylton through ball and got the better of a dithering Michael Harriman, but Steve McNulty got across to snuff out the danger before the winger could pull the trigger.

Hylton was again the provider with a better chance with the next attack.

He slipped in Patrick Hoban to advance on goal, but the Irishman's shot was well saved by Mark Tyler.

A goal felt close as the game began to open up and so it proved - but it came at the wrong end for United.

Stockley managed to find room to poke home a cross at Clarke's near post, although United were aggrieved about what looked a foul on Hylton in the build-up.

The hosts shrugged off the setback and went on to finish the half strongly.

O'Dowda whipped in two wicked crosses in quick succession which Luton scrambled to clear as United turned up the pressure.

And seven minutes after falling behind, the hosts drew level.

Michael Collins got forward on the right and when his low cross fell to Mullins, the centre back rammed home a finish to level the scores.

United picked up where they left off when the second half began.

Luton increasingly became pinned back and the hosts went on to enjoy a thrilling spell either side of the hour mark.

MacDonald came close to a debut goal with a low shot which bobbled off the pitch and almost embarrassed Tyler, who managed to shovel the ball wide.

A minute late Mullins came within inches of his second goal of the afternoon, heading wide from O'Dowda's cross.

The chances kept coming and Hoban had the ball in the net from Hylton's cross, only to look up and see an offside flag.

Within seconds the Irishman popped up on the right flank and centred for O'Dowda, who could only stab a weak shot at Tyler.

After a brief lull, MacDonald had the next chance after exchanging passes with Hylton, before dragging a shot wide.

It was his last action of the game as the forward was replaced by Roberts, who within seconds barged his way through to test Tyler.

Luton belatedly steadied the ship and one of their substitutes Nathan Oduwa, caused problems on the left flank to swing the momentum towards the visitors.

They should have gone in front again two minutes from time when Clarke could only parry Alex Wall's fierce free-kick, but on the rebound Mark Cullen fired wide from two yards.

United had to survive a couple more tense moments in stoppage time, but held firm to ensure they took a point.

Oxford Utd: Clarke, Brindley (Long 73), Mullins, Wright, Skarz, MacDonald (Roberts 68), Collins, Ruffels, O'Dowda, Hylton, Hoban.

Unused subs: Crocombe, Dunkley, Humphreys, Rose, Ashby.

Luton Tn: Tyler, Harriman, McNulty, Wilkinson, Howells, Smith, Drury, Doyle, Whalley (Oduwa 59), Stockley (Wall 69), Hall (Cullen 59).

Unused subs: Justham, Lacey, Guttridge, Robinson.

Referee: Richard Clark (Northumberland).

Attendance: 7,451 (2,264 visitors).