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By GAVIN CANEY, Sports Reporter
Saturday, September 8, 2012
An injury-time penalty from Jason Turner kept King’s Lynn Town’s FA Cup dream alive at Daventry Town this afternoon.
The Linnets looked to be heading out of the competition thanks to Scott Cross’ 61st-minute goal but were handed a lifeline, literally, three minutes into stoppage time when Neil King was adjuged to have handled the ball in his own box.
Up stepped Turner, who missed a spot kick on Tuesday night during the goalless draw with Carlton Town, to slam the ball home and force a replay at The Walks on Tuesday night. He showed immense character to bounce back but in all fairness his goal was the least Lynn deserved in a game where both sides could claim they did enough to ensure their name remained in the hat for Monday’s draw.
Ex-Daventry defender Jason Lee made his debut for the Linnets after signing for Gary Setchell’s side on Thursday. He joined Phil Gulliver at centre-back while Ryan Fryatt moved to right-back in suspended Ross Watson’s absence.
Dan Quigley sat out the last of his two-game ban while another former Daventry player, Russell Dunkley, could only make the bench as he continues to overcome a calf problem.
With both sides plying their trade at Step Four of the non-league ladder it was always likely to be a tight affair. And it certainly was with little chances being created in a first half that bared all the hallmarks of a pre-season friendly in glorious September sunshine.
Jamie Forshaw spurned the best opportunity when he raced through inside a minute but could only scuff a shot at the hosts’ keeper Richard Morris.
Steve Spriggs spurned the next decent effort when Forshaw found him after getting hold of Jordan Yong’s centre. However, Lynn’s little wideman pulled his attempt just wide.
Setchell’s side were territorially dominant for large parts of the half and without being outstanding, or ruthless, looked the better side. Forshaw did find the net in the 27th minute, but was ruled offside after completing a clever one-two with striker partner Turner.
It took until the 40th minute for Darran Foster’s charges to even have a shot on target. Cross raced past Lee into the box but Alex Street did outstandingly well to narrow the angle so quickly and save the shot with his legs.
Despite being limited to only long shots, it certainly wasn’t one-way traffic, and the Communication Park outfit posed a threat, of sorts, on the break.
It was much the same for the opening quarter of the second period, even if the Northamptonshire-based side seemed to possess more urgency. The only goalbound attempt came from their left-back Jamie Gould but his free-kick was comfortably saved by Street.
They got the reward for their improved second-half display just after the hour mark when Cross poked home from close range. Street had missed the corner, Kyle Cartwright’s header had hit the bar and the Daventry striker was there to turn home the rebound.
His afternoon ended minutes later with a serious-looking injury, but Foster’s men continued to grow in confidence and poured forward for a second. Two mix-ups between Lee and Street, who had a crazy five minutes, nearly allowed the men in purple to grab a second.
With the Linnets all at sea, they nearly snatched an equaliser against the run of play but Jamie Thurlbourne’s effort went the wrong side of the post.
And to be fair, with Daventry grabbing the game by the scruff of the neck, they looked the likelier side to add a second.
But Turner’s late drama saved his side and they could have won it at the end with Danny Beaumont and Spriggs going close to snatching a remarkable winner.
• Daventry: Morris, Simpson, Gould, Sanders, Cartwright, Oulton, A.King, N.King, Cross (Confue, 66), Beckley, Liburd (Gearing, 44)
• Subs not used: Blake, McCreadie, Holford,
• Booked: Cartwright, Morris
• Goal: Cross (61)
• King’s Lynn: Street, Fryatt, Gulliver, Lee, Yong (Buhlemann, 78), Spriggs, Bunting, Hughes (Beaumont 67), Thurlbourne, Forshaw (Dunkley, 82), Turner
• Subs not used: McLeish
• Goal: Turner (penalty, 90+3)
• Referee: D-Ravel Cheusiaua
• Attendance: 203