‘What was he doing up there?’ - Culverhouse reacts after defender comes to the rescue
The wry smile of Ian Culverhouse told you all you needed to know after this last-gasp King's Lynn Town victory.
The Linnets boss had just witnessed left-back Frazer Blake-Tracy grab all three points with a stoppage-time winner in a game where a draw had seemed likely from a very early stage.
'What on earth was he doing up there at that stage?' was Culverhouse's initial reaction. 'We have been second best for long periods of the game out there today and to come away with three points instead of one is a bonus. You have to keep going in games like that and sometimes you do get a reward like this.
'Credit to them for keeping going and credit to Frazer for hurting them and Ryan's (Hawkins) persistence in the build-up. I have to say fair play to Royston as well. They have obviously done a lot of homework on us and have come up with a game plan that they have almost executed to perfection. They were quickly at us and defended well, denying us space and time and they will be very disappointed right now.'
Injuries meant the Linnets had only two outfield substitutes.
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'Michael (Gash) is precautionary really due to him feeling his hamstring slightly,' said Culverhouse. 'He would have been a big risk today and it's one I wasn't prepared to take. Jordan (Richards) did a little warm-up on his own with the sports therapist and he is coming along okay so we will just see how that goes and Aaron Jones has now had his operation so he will be away from us for a few weeks. I thought the two new lads (Jake Kerins and Joe Robinson) did well for us today but you can see that even with those additions and a couple out the squad looks a little thin.'
Royston had the better of the few chances in the early exchanges with Spyros Mentis firing straight at Alex Street when well placed. Joe Castiglione fed Vance Bola for the Crows but scooped over from close in with the former producing an excellent diving save from Street as the hosts applied a little pressure.
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Joe Newton's low centre was missed by inches by Castiglione before the Linnets carved out a shooting opportunity for substitute Hawkins whose shot was deflected onto a post and away for a corner which came to nothing. Crow's sub James Potton put a shot wide when really he should have done better and with the game in the first minute of stoppage time the hosts were made to pay for the miss as Hawkins hassled skipper Adam Murray into a mistake before delivering a low perfect centre which Blake-Tracy met with the finest of touches.
Royston: Welch. Scott-Morriss. Newton. Thomas. Murray. Joseph. Mentis. Corcoran. Bola (Potton 76). Castiglione (Gallin 86). Gordon. Subs not used: Oswick. Crowther. Brathwaite.
Lynn: Street, Kerins, Blake-Tracy, Jarvis, Fryatt, McAuley, Clunan, Robinson, Marriott, Parker, Henderson (Hawkins 46). Subs not used: Castellan, Bastock. Goal: Blake-Tracy 91.
Referee: Jonathon Burridge; Att: 370.