Grantham 0 King's Lynn 1

The Linnets boosted their chances of home advantage in the play-offs, despite the second half dismissal of midfielder Sam McMahon, with a slender win over local rivals Grantham yesterday.
Skipper McMahon received his marching orders for two yellow cards, leaving his side to hang on for the final 20 minutes of an uninspiring Easter clash.
Matt Nolan's 13th goal of the campaign proved a lucky one to divide the two sides.
Lynn manager Tommy Taylor was forced into one change from the side that beat Banbury 2-0 on Saturday.
Defender Grant Cooper was ruled out with a strained hamstring, and was replaced by Danny Hammond at the back.
Grantham included former Linnet Martin Matthews in their starting XI. Both sides were greeted by a swirling wind as they took to the field.
The home side were first to threaten when Jason Turner found space inside the Lynn box, only for Shaun Carey to snuff out the danger with a well-timed interception.
Lynn's first opportunity came from an in-swinging Adam Smith corner in the sixth minute, which eluded a crowd of players in the Grantham box.
Shortly after, Matt O'Halloran fired wide just inside the area as the Walks outfit began to shade a scrappy opening few minutes.
Some sharp interplay between Cedric Anselin and Dean West enabled veteran full-back West to create an opening in the 17th minute before a last-ditch clearance.
Midway through the half Grantham's Ian Robinson tested John Higgs' catching skills from 18 yards.

 

Three minutes later the deadlock was broken when an inch-perfect centre from Smith found the head of Matt Nolan, whose effort was helped over the line by Richard Weale on the far post.
Lynn came close to doubling their advantage minutes before the interval when Nolan headed a West cross straight into the arms of keeper Mario Ziccardi.
Defender Smith was at the heart of Lynn's best moves, but a bobbling pitch combined with the blustery conditions made it difficult for both sides to play attractive football.
Grantham were a different proposition at the start of the second period, and Higgs had to be alert to deny Michael Sneddon shortly after the restart.
Some last-ditch defending kept the Gingerbreads at bay as Lynn sat deep and invited pressure, Weale twice going close in the space of a few seconds.
Lynn's McMahon talked himself into a booking in the 64th minute, but nearly redeemed himself two minutes later when his testing free-kick was gratefully clutched onto by Ziccardi.
Midway through the half Smith's 20-yard volley crashed off the home woodwork.
The Linnets were left with their backs to the wall for the last quarter when McMahon was shown his second yellow after looking to have won the ball fairly on the far touchline.
Grantham piled forward in the latter stages, and Robinson's shot was deflected for a corner in the 79th minute.
Reports were coming in that Bath had lost at Chippenham, so bringing Lynn up to second.

 

Grantham: Ziccardi, Matthews, Weale, Sturgess, Julian, Brown, Smith, Robinson, Sneddon, Turner, Popple (Glover 75). Subs not used: Burrows, Maddison, Speed, Early.
Lynn: Higgs, West, Smith, McMahon, Hammond, Camm, J. Defty, Anselin (Hyde 87), Nolan (Charles 74), Carey, O'Halloran (C. Defty 70). Not used: Peters, Harvey.
Booked: McMahon 64, 70; O'Halloran 70. Sent-off: McMahon 70. MoM: Adam Smith. Goal: Nolan 25.
Referee: W. McIntosh.
Attendance: 523.


Report by permission of the Lynn News