Kingstonian assistant coach Martin Tyler has denied the Ks management team were too quick to give up on a play-off place this season.

A 1-0 win over relegation-threatened Thurrock on Saturday means fifth spot remains a tantalising six points away but, with only three league games remaining, it is surely too late to hope for a promotion charge.

It had fans wondering about recent defeats to lowly Hastings United and Wingate & Finchley when manager Alan Dowson put out more experimental lineups.

“We’ve had a bit of youth in the side that’s got us through this difficult period,” said Tyler, who combines his work as a Sky Sports commentator with coaching the Ks.

“Whether it would have helped in games with more pressure … you could argue now that the pressure is off we’ve found a bit of form.

"We know how close we were, we didn’t really give up on it but there was a feeling around the club that maybe we’d gone as far as we could go this season.”

In truth, Saturday was a slow drift in the sunshine, only enlivened by the late introduction of 17-year-old academy product Jamil Okai.

With six minutes remaining, the leggy young striker worked some space and had a shot parried by Thurrock keeper Will Viner.

Lewis Taylor followed up to sweep the rebound into the corner for his fourth goal of the campaign.

It completed Ks third victory in a row and, with the London Senior Cup final against Blue Square South Bromley due on April 30, the season could yet finish on a relative high.

Tyler added: “We played as well as we’ve played in six or seven weeks at Margate [last Tuesday] and thoroughly deserved to win.

“We got the cup semi-final out the way with the right result as well, and what a chance to make it three wins in a row in five days, and they’ve gone and done it.

“Non-League football is never perfect. I’m lucky enough to work in the Premier League and, watching the games for my job, that’s never perfect either, so you have to juggle it around and make the best of what you’ve got available, and this week the players have been absolutely fantastic.”

Ks play their last home league game this evening against Concord Rangers, where player of the season voting forms will be available in the club shop.