Birthday boy helps King’s Lynn Town Bull-doze title favourites
As birthdays celebrations go, they don’t get any bigger than on Tuesday night as Lynn returned to the top of the Southern League standings.
Ryan Hawkins marked his 23rd with a goal as Lynn produced a special display to come from two goals down at the interval to beat Hereford 3-2 at The Walks.
It condemned the Bulls to an away league defeat for the first time since August 2015 - an incredible run spanning 53 games.
After the game, Hawkins, who netted Lynn’s equaliser during an euphoric night, said the team never gave up believing.
Hawkins said: “It was brilliant resilience from the boys to come back from 2-0 down at half-time to win 3-2.
“At half-time, the Gaffer said just let your football do the talking, keep working hard and for each other.
“Three points was massive for either side tonight. It puts a statement out there saying we’ve beat Hereford, so who’s going to stop us now?
“He just said we conceded two sloppy goals, from switching off, but he just said if we kept playing, shortened the game up, kept the ball a bit more then the football would do the talking.
“He said we were not out of the game and that the next goal was vital, and we got it, and a second and a third.”
There looked no way back for Lynn after Jordan Liburd opened his Hereford account after slotting the ball home from a corner and John Mills scored a crucial second goal on the stroke of half-time.
But Lynn had other ideas and Michael Gash reduced the deficit four minutes into the second half.
Hawkins kept his composure to level the scores and deep into stoppage time substitute Toby Hilliard lifted the roof off The Walks with the most dramatic of winners.
Hawkins now believes that Lynn’s fans can be the 12th man in their chase for promotion.
A season’s-best attendance of 1,181 packed into The Walks and Hawkins admitted their backing made a huge difference during Lynn’s incredible comeback in the second half.
“This is a tough place to come,” said Hawkins. “Everyone who comes here says it is a tough place to come. Obviously we have a massive fan base and they help us massively, the atmosphere is brilliant so hats off to them.
“Fans want to see the best football and we want to play the best football, but you can’t always play it because of the pitch, but we played it tonight on a half decent pitch and it shows the fans appreciate it.
“As a whole we do everything to get three points. We played really well and the momentum of the crowd was massive. It is like a 12th man on the pitch.
“I we stay up there more people will want to come and watch us – we want to go up, the gaffer wants us to go up, the players do and with all these people watching it helps a heck of a lot.”
Tomorrow, the Linnets will hope to put the icing on the cake to a super week by beating Dunstable Town at The Walks.
King’s Lynn: Street, Norman, Blake-Tracy, Frary (Parker 58), R Fryatt, Jarvis, Clunan, King (Hilliard 72), Gash, Hawkins and Lappin. Subs not used: Siddons, Pearson, L. Fryatt.
Booked: Jarvis, Hawkins. Scorer: Gash 49, Hawkins 62. Hilliard 90+3.
Hereford: Horsell, Oates, Deaman, Liburd, Pring (O’Shea 80), Smith, Murphy, Bird (Richards 80), Reffell, Mills, Symons. Subs not used: Haysham, Preen, Puddy.
Booked: Pring, Scorer: Cullinane-Liburd 8, Mills 45.