Lacklustre Lynn see their FA Cup dreams vanish

King's Lynn boss Ian Culverhouse saw his team exit the FA Cup at Nantwich Picture: Ian Burt

King's Lynn boss Ian Culverhouse saw his team exit the FA Cup at Nantwich Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Archant

Below-par King's Lynn were left to ponder what might have been as their FA Cup hopes were extinguished for another season by Northern Premier league Nantwich Town.

Kings Lynn Town's Chris Henderson saw a goal ruled out Picture: Matthew Usher

Kings Lynn Town's Chris Henderson saw a goal ruled out Picture: Matthew Usher

The Dabbers, who had already accounted for the Linnets fellow National North side AFC Telford in a previous round, were sunk by a close-range goal minutes before the interval from full-back Troy Bourne to secure a place in this evening's first round proper draw for only the third time in their history.

Lynn's cause was not helped by the absence of the two Ryans, Fryatt and Jarvis, who were joined on the sidelines by elbow injury victim Chris Smith. Town's week-long search for a centre back had proved fruitless, meaning Ross Barrows had to be deployed to partner Rory McAuley at the heart of the visiting defence.

It was, however, the other end of the Weaver Stadium that saw the first action of the afternoon as Nathan Fox picked out Michael Gash who in turn located Adam Marriott whose shot cannoned to safety from Greg Hall's right-hand post in one of the rare occasions that Lynn's striking duo were able to break free of the home shackles.

Joe Malkin and Ben Harrison fired wide for the hosts before Valdemar Schousboe had a header palmed to safety by Alex Street. Overlapping full-back Fox fired two more chances over for the visitors and Gash had Hall scrambling to collect a looped effort. The well-organised hosts were now playing on the break and it was from one of these moves that the deciding goal arrived with 39 minutes on the clock. James Lawrie broke quickly down the Linnets' left with his low centre being diverted beyond Street close in by Bourne who wriggled free of his marker to provide an easy finish. It could have been worse just before the interval with Matt Devine unable to produce any kind of meaningful contact inches from the goal line.

The Dabbers won an early second half corner which saw David Webb's delivery curled inches over Street's bar by Schousboe. Manager Ian Culverhouse had seen enough and introduced Jordan Richards and Sonny Carey at the expense of Fox and Alfie Payne in a double change. However, the home side continued to press as Schousboe again fired wide of target and Webb went even closer when hitting Street's bar from distance.

Marriott was brought down on the edge of the home box but Gash's free-kick lacked any pace to trouble Hall who produced an easy diving save. Chris Henderson thought he had levelled things as his stooping header beat Hall, but his and Lynn's celebrations were short lived as the assistant raised his flag to signal an offside decision. Barrows flashed a shot wide from the angle and deep into stoppage time the Linnets other substitute, Natty Stewart's close-range shot was palmed away to safety by Hall.

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The final whistle was greeted with wild home celebrations to the strains of the Ken Dodd classic Happiness over the stadium PA and Lynn and their supporters contemplating the less than happy prospect of an almost four-hour journey home.

Nantwich Town: Hall, Bourne (Davis 74), Devine, Stair, Langley, Harrison, Hughes, Lawrie, Malkin (Saxon 78), Schousboe (Mwasile 61), Webb. Subs not used: Bell, Cooke, Walsh, Read. Goal: Bourne 39.

King's Lynn Town: Street, Jones, Fox (Richards 55), Payne (Carey 55), Barrows, McAuley, Clunan, Kelly, Gash, Marriott, Henderson (Stewart 74). Subs not used: Gilbert, Taylor, Bastock.

Ref: D Watson. Att: 742.

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