Patient defender Lee is reaping the rewards at King’s Lynn Town
- Credit: Matthew Usher
Boss Gary Setchell believes in-form Jason Lee is reaping the rewards of his own patience at King's Lynn Town.
The defender joined the Linnets from Banbury last September but found himself on the substitutes' bench through most of Novevember and December thanks to the performances of Ryan Fryatt and Phil Gulliver.
However, a suspension for Fryatt, who got sent off during a Boxing Day draw at Brigg Town, gave the left-footed 29-year-old a chance at the heart of Setchell's defence. And it's one he's taken with both hands having now played in each of Lynn's 17 matches since.
Another virtuoso display on Saturday during a 2-0 home win over Loughborough Dynamo drew more plaudits, including plenty from his impressed manager.
Setchell said: 'Jason's been excellent. Jason is a good defender. I think our two centre-halves (Lee and Gulliver) played really well, even in the first half. They were really solid and they're good players.
'It's a left foot, right-foot combination, which makes it a lot easier for people setting balls and it gives you natural balance for the team. I'm happy with Jason, he's happy here and he's done brilliant.
'To be fair to the boy he has got to take a lot of credit because he sat there for, I don't know, 10 to 12 weeks when Ryan was playing really well and he didn't murmur or moan.
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'He probably could have gone and played elsewhere but he stuck it out. I don't know how many players would have stuck at it as long as he did. He knew he was good enough and he was just patient and waited for his chance.'
Lee made one goal-saving tackle and a vital clearance as Lynn bounced back from their 4-1 Easter Monday mauling at Stamford, their first defeat in 15 league games, to record a sixth clean sheet in nine matches.
In front of the back four, returning fans' favourite Dan Quigley – who missed the defeat at Kettering Road through illness – gave another typically gutsy display. Setchell sung the praises of his central midfielder who gave his all, as ever, despite being under the weather.
'I got a text off Bunts (injured captain, Richard Bunting) at 11.30am saying 'Quigz isn't right, he's a poorly lad',' admitted the Lynn boss.
'But I needed his presence in there and he said 'I'll give you everything I've got'; and that's exactly what he did for 70 minutes. He was probably about 60 to 70pc fit as he's got a bad chest infection. But now he's got another week to get over it and get ready for Saturday.'
Lynn, second to Coalville by virtue of an inferior goal difference, return to action at the weekend when they travel to play-off hopefuls Halesowen Town.
- Click the related link on the right-hand side of this page to read a match report from Saturday's game.