King’s Lynn Town 1 Biggleswade Town 2 – Linnets are stunned by late penalty

Leon Mettam challenges the Biggleswade 'keeper. Picture: Ian Burt

Leon Mettam challenges the Biggleswade 'keeper. Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Ian Burt

King's Lynn Town's hopes of making a late charge towards the play-offs suffered a huge blow after they suffered a second defeat in the space of a few days.

A penalty in each half from Inih Effiong, who recently returned from a trial with League Two Grimsby, condemned the Linnets to their eighth defeat of the campaign. It was cruel on The Walks outfit after Michael Clunan had hauled them back into the game early in the second half.

Lynn's starting line-up showed three changes from Saturday as manager Gary Setchell shuffled his pack. Michael Clunan, Kurtis Revan and Ryan Hawkins all returned to the side with Dan Quigley and Toby Hilliard dropping to the bench.

Defensive midfielder Lee Smith was a late withdrawal for Lynn a few minutes before kick-off, so player-assistant boss Lee Stevenson, who was originally named as a substitute, kept his place in the side.

The first opportunity fell to the hosts after seven minutes when a looping cross from Sam Warburton on the left was headed over by Leon Mettam. Lynn remained on top and some delightful link-up play between Shaun McWilliams and Clunan 15 minutes in led to the former being fouled on the edge of the box.

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Stevenson drilled the resulting free-kick into the Biggleswade wall before firing the rebound hard and wide of the target.

The Waders took the lead against the run of play in the 25th minute after a clumsy challenge from Tom Ward on Rhys Hoenes led to a penalty and Effiong stepped up to put the visitors in front.

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Thirteen minutes before the break, the lively Revan forced Ian Brown into a low save down to his left as Lynn looked for a quick response.

The Linnets thought they'd won a penalty of their own three minutes into the second period when referee Tom Hancock pointed to the spot after Mettam's volley struck the hand of Russell Short. But after a long consultation with his assistant, the referee changed his mind with the striker deemed to be in an offside position when he received the ball.

The home faithful didn't have to wait too much longer for an equaliser though when, in the 53rd minute, Clunan finished brilliantly from just outside the box.

Lynn missed a golden opportunity to go ahead 15 minutes from time when Mettam ballooned an exquisite cross from substitute Toby Hilliard over the woodwork. And they were made to pay for not taking their chances in the first minute of stoppage time when Alex Street upended Hoenes and Effiong tucked home his second spot-kick of the night.

King's Lynn Town: Alex Street, Kurtis Revan, Ryan Fryatt, Sam Gaughan, Tom Ward, Lee Stevenson, Michael Clunan, Shaun McWilliams, Ryan Hawkins, Leon Mettam, Sam Warburton (Toby Hilliard 60). Subs: Dan Quigley, Jacek Zielonka, Jordan Yong

Biggleswade Town: Ian Brown, Jordan Patrick, Lucas Perry, Connor Hall, Russell Short (Evan Key 77), Gavin Hoyte, Craig Daniel, Robbie Parker, Inih Effiong, Tony Burnett (Connor Vincent 46), Ryan Hoenes. Subs: Sam Patin, Sam Gibson

Attendance: 345

Referee: Mr Tom Hancock (Ely)

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