Footballer has night in lay-by after breakdown following postponed game

Lynn frontman, Michael Gash. Picture: Ian Burt

King's Lynn Town forward Michael Gash had a long night on the A1 after his Mercedes broke down on the way back from the Linnets' postponed National League fixture at Chesterfield. - Credit: Ian Burt Photography

King's Lynn Town forward Michael Gash spent a night in a lay-by with club physio Carol Holland after his car broke down on the way back from a postponed match.

The pair's trip had already been an unsuccessful one after the Linnets' National League fixture away at Chesterfield had been called off not long before kick-off because of a waterlogged pitch.

Like the rest of the club's players and staff, Mr Gash and Mrs Holland set off back to Norfolk in the striker's Mercedes – but their plan of an early night upon getting home was scuppered by a pothole on the A1, which burst a tyre.

Gash pulled into a lay-by where roadworks were taking place, where he called his wife Sarah to tell her what happened, before she got in touch with the RAC.

Delays meant the recovery company was unable to reach them, and so a local firm from nearby Grantham was contracted.

But help didn't reach them until 2am – six hours after they broke down.

For the pair, it meant a lot of time to pass with very little to do.

"Carol had some kind of tablet she was playing some games on," Mr Gash told the BBC. "Obviously I had my phone and I was on the phone to the RAC and Mercedes at different points.

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"Then sleep [helped to pass the time] as well, because it was getting so late."

They were kept warm on a wintry night by a group of workmen, who offered the Linnets pair refreshments while they waited in the lay-by.

Mr Gash added: "One lane got closed and there was a load of road workers. They came and saw us and made us a cup of tea each, which was nice of them."

When they eventually arrived at their homes, more than eight hours had passed since they set off from Chesterfield.

The game in Derbyshire had been called off with the pitch unplayable, despite efforts from Spireites staff and volunteers to clear snow from the playing surface.

It had already been postponed once before, having originally been scheduled for December 28 but called off for Covid-related issues.

The "farce" of the National League situation amid the current lockdown has already seen King's Lynn manager Ian Culverhouse call for the current season to be scrapped.