Twelve months ago King’s Lynn went to the New Manor Ground and, despite having had a man sent off, came from behind late in the game to steal three points.
Fast forward to Monday night and a similar fate befell the Robins again, albeit this time the visitors only took away one point rather than the three they’d managed before.
Having deservedly built up a two-goal advantage Ilkeston then failed to shut up shop and allowed two goals in two minutes to creep in and hand the Norfolk side a share of the points.
The signs that another dramatic game could be on the cards came in the opening five minutes as both teams scored.
The Linnets took the lead with the game’s first meaningful attack on four minutes, David Bridges’ deft flick sending Jake Jones in on goal and he rounded keeper Jordan Smith before netting from a narrow angle.
The hosts were level within 60 seconds. Chey Adams’ shot was well tipped over by keeper Alex Street but from the resulting James Reid corner Kane Richards got free to head the equaliser.
Street then pushed away a long-range David Morgan free-kick, whilst at the other end Dan Quigley headed too high from a Jones cross, but after Adams had flashed an effort across the face of goal for the hosts they then took the lead on 33 minutes.
Richards worked hard down the right and despite being clipped by Jordan Yong - the referee rightly allowing the advantage - he ran on and crossed perfectly for former Linnet Rob Duffy to head powerfully past Street.
Duffy, a scorer for King’s Lynn in both corresponding games last season, was then denied by Street just before the break with his low shot hacked away by the keeper’s foot.
The visitors threatened first in the second-half with George Thomson’s half volley from 25 yards straight at Smith, but the Robins then scored their third when great work by Adams saw him get to the byline from where he pulled the ball back to Richards who finished well from ten yards out.
Sub Steve Spriggs’ low ball into the box narrowly missed two incoming Linnets players midway through the second-half, before at the other end Ross Watson did well to block an Adams shot out for a corner.
The Linnets were then reduced to ten men on 74 minutes when Jackson Ramm received his second yellow card - no great shock to anyone given a few tasty challenges had flown in from the visiting players throughout the game.
Despite that, it was they who would then suddenly pull the game level with two goals in two minutes.
First, sub Sam Mulready curled home after a mistake at the back on 81 minutes, then barely 90 seconds later fellow sub Spriggs did well down the right before crossing for Michael Frew to head home.
The hosts were stunned but still had the fight in them to try and wrestle the points back in their favour.
Sub Mike Williams headed a good chance at Street before setting up Adams on 89 minutes who was denied what looked a certain goal by a superb block from Watson, an act that surely saved the visitors from losing the point they’d battled back to earn.
Monday, September 8, 2014:
Ilkeston: 1 Jordan Smith 2 Luke Shaw 3 James Reid 4 Akil Wright 5 Joe Maguire (c) 6 Jack Lane 7 David Morgan 8 Callum Chettle 9 Rob Duffy (Mike Williams 79) 10 Kane Richards (Kieran Wallace 79) 11 Chey Adams. Subs not used: Matt Baker, Jake Mulraney, Danny Gordon
King’s Lynn: 1 Alex Street 2 Jackson Ramm 3 Jordon Yong 4 Ross Watson 5 Henry Eze 6 Dan Quigley (Steve Spriggs 54) 7 David Bell (c) 8 David Bridges 9 Michael Frew 10 George Thomson (Ryan Fryatt 85) 11 Jake Jones (Sam Mulready 64). Subs not used: Chris Ward, Shaun Stocker
Att: 384 Ref: Geoff Law
Star Robin: Kane Richards
Report by Mark Duffy (Twitter - @DuffersSport)
Photos by Craig Lamont (@_CLPhotography)