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Kings Lynn 0 Hitchin Town 0

Saturday, March 1 2008

If anyone needed any proof that Hitchin are well and truly fighting for their Premier Division place, then this game provided firm evidence.

For the fourth consecutive game, the Canaries put on a determined show and this time were within a whisker of upsetting a team that may well end the season with the BGB Premier trophy in their boardroom.

The biggest compliment paid to Hitchin was at the final whistle as the home fans expressed their frustration that title-chasing Lynn could not beat a team that has struggled all season. "We've a different team now," said manager Darran Hay. "And I think everyone can see that. We want everyone to get behind us in the last 10 games and cheer us to safety. Get behind us and together we can keep this club in the Premier."

The way Hitchin played suggested that survival is a realistic goal. For long periods, the Canaries were the better side and might have gone in at half time a goal ahead. New signing Mark Barnes linked up with brother Paul and the latter missed a golden chance.

Hitchin goalkeeper Martin Bennett had an excellent game and has risen to the challenge of claiming a first team place. The youngster stopped Danny Bloomfield in a one-on-one situation and also came to Hitchin's rescue in the opening stages of the second half.

Hitchin had another good chance after the break, Tom Pepper running down the flank and setting up Paul Barnes, but his shot was saved.

As ever with Hitchin this season, there was a cost - Jon Stevenson was stretchered off in the 74th minute and late in the game, Bennett was also injured.

In the closing stages, Hitchin lived dangerously, but although chances fell to Joe Francis, Hitchin held firm, earning a standing ovation from the 40 fans who made the journey to East Anglia.

Kings Lynn: Howie, Bains, Chapman, Crane, Hoyte, Camm, Turner (Nolan 86), Sedgemore (Fisk 32), J Defty, Bloomfield (Frew 69), Francis

Hitchin: Bennett, Deeney, Pepper, Williams, Stevenson (Barr 74), Smith, Lewis (Kenneford 90), Gregson, P.Barnes, M.Barnes (Olaleye 81), Ducket

Referee: A.Maton

Attendance: 1,223

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