Stewarts & Lloyds Corby 1, King’s Lynn Town 2

King's Lynn Town boss Gary Setchell believes his side's victory at S&L Corby showed how 'UCL hardened' the squad has become.

The Linnets dropped points at Corby last season at a crucial time in the season but Saturday exorcised a few demons for Setchell and his squad as goals from Jamie Thurlbourne and Danny Beaumont secured an important win as title rivals Long Buckby also picked up maximum points.

The Lynn chief thought his side's performance demonstrated just how far they have come this season compared to last when St Neots ran away with the title.

'We showed a lot of steel on Saturday and maybe that's where we fell down last season,' he said.

'We thought we could play our way through the UCL last season but sometimes it's about rolling your sleeves up and getting the job done.

'Our away form has been tip-top this year and that's a real credit to the way the players have performed. I feel that we are UCL hardened – we know nobody is going to give anything to us easily – we've got to fight for everything.'

Learning from last season's encounter, Setchell changed his side's tactics to ensure they wouldn't be overrun in midfield and, in Jamie Thurlbourne, they always had an outlet down the left to exploit Corby's weaknesses at the back.

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'We tinkered with the team a bit and played with three central midfielders to have a bit of a platform in there,' he added.

'We knew it was going to be a battle. It's a very uneven pitch with a big slope and I don't think either side strung together more than three or four passes.

'Jamie Thurlbourne was the out ball for us and he has really got back to his best recently. He has had two bad hamstring injuries but we have seen a big improvement in his performances recently. That will improve his confidence as well – he knows that he can be a big player for us.'

Beaumont's tireless running was also rewarded with a goal and Setchell was delighted to see the former Dereham man's hard work rewarded.

'He absolutely ran his socks off for us and he is really coming into his own as a King's Lynn player now. We know that it takes time for some players to adjust to playing for this club. He missed Jack Defty when he was out but in those two and Robbie Harris we've got three very good strikers all capable of scoring goals.'

With each passing week it is looking like the title will be decided when the Linnets go to Long Buckby later in the season but Setchell won't let his troops look too far ahead.

'We've both got very difficult games to come and I would be very surprised if either side didn't drop points from now until the end of the season,' he said. 'There's going to be twists and turns and there is going to be a lot riding on the game when we have to play them in April.

'But we can't look too far forward – we need to take each game at a time and see where it takes us.'

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