King's Lynn hit UCL top spot

Paddy Davitt King's Lynn 6, Daventry United 1:Town cruised back to the top of the United Counties League Premier Division tonight after a six goal romp against outclassed Daventry United at The Walks.

Paddy Davitt

King's Lynn 6, Daventry United 1

Town cruised back to the top of the United Counties League Premier Division tonight after a six goal romp against outclassed Daventry United at The Walks.

Lynn were 4-0 up at the break courtesy of Danny White, Jamie Thurlbourne, Jack Defty and Robbie Harris. Darren Frost pulled one back for the Reds before Defty notched his second and Steve Spriggs opened his league account on his return to the club with an audacious chip in the closing seconds.

Linnets' joint boss Gary Setchell believes the hosts' masterclass sent out a warning to title rivals St Neots and Newport Pagnell - who both lost in the FA Cup - after moving two points clear at the summit.

“Before the game I looked at it and they'd had a good result, midweek, against Cogenhoe. We had a makeshift back four and we felt we could be in for a tough afternoon,” he said. “But it was one we just had to get through unscathed. We would have been more than happy with that, but the way the lads went about the first half was tremendous. We knocked the ball about and moved it and to be honest we looked a different league.

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“(Stuart) Ablett came in and apart from his fitness in the last 20 minutes he looked like he had been playing all season. I thought he was superb and some of our wing play was different class. Last week at Dereham we raised the bar of our own performance and we said to the lads today we can only get better the more games we play. People understand their roles fully and we showed that. Even at 3-0 up we had wide men tucking in, we had midfielders keeping their shape; rather than roaming all over the place. I was disappointed with their goal but that is what happens when you make three substitutions and it is stop start. That is something to work on and an area we can improve on - keeping our foot on the pedal for 90 minutes.”

New Wisbech signing Ablett was handed an instant debut alongside Kyle Plumb at centre half with Brady Stone and Martin McNeil injured. Danny Buhlemann slotted into the left back berth vacated by the unavailable Jamie Alsop with Spriggs preferred to Ross Kelly in midfield for his first start of the season.

Reds' frontman Neil Stacey miscued at the back post in a confident start for the visitors before White powered Lynn in front from Jamie Thurlbourne's pinpoint cross on eight minutes. The winger's whipped free kick flew around United's two man wall to extend Lynn's lead on 14 minutes.

Defty's towering header caused panic in the United ranks but Ross Irvine hacked clear on his own goal line.

Lee Farrow then denied White and Spriggs with a fine double stop just before the half hour mark but Defty swivelled onto White's cutback to power Lynn further in front from six yards.

Farrow dived low to his right to claw out Defty's far post header but the keeper was left exposed again when Harris rounded him to slot a fourth from close range before the break. Defty's far post header on the restart was chalked off with Jamie Thurlbourne's cross adjudged to have drifted out of play.

Frost pulled one back during a sluggish second half spell for the hosts when he held off Buhlemann to lift over Alex Street. Defty restored Lynn's four goal cushion seconds later when he swept home Spriggs deflected strike.

Town's second half arrival Ross Kelly picked out Spriggs who checked inside but choked his strike at Farrow. The pacy wide player, however, completed the rout in the final seconds with an impudent chip from fully 35 yards over Farrow after attempting a similar party piece in last week's FA Vase extra time win at Dereham.

King's Lynn: Street, Bexfield (Smith 65), Buhlemann, L Thurlbourne, Ablett (Kelly 72), Plumb, Spriggs, White, Defty (Cubberley 74), Harris, J Thurlbourne. Sub (not used): Setchell.

Booking: L Thurlbourne

Goals: White (8), J Thurlbourne (14), Defty (31, 69), Harris (43), Spriggs (90)

Daventry: Farrow, Irvine, Coleman (Briscoe 45), Waldock, McKinlay (Frost 57), Jones, Byrne, Crockett, Vine, Stacy (Whittingham 57), Baille. Subs all used.

Booking: Vine

Goal: Frost (66)

Referee: P McVey (Hunts)

Attendance: 698