Kingstonian’s FA Cup adventure came to an end on Saturday in front of the BBC cameras as AFC Fylde emerged 2-0 winners.

Manager Hayden Bird refused to be downhearted after witnessing a gutsy display that perhaps deserved more. “I’m immensely proud of the football club, of the supporters and what we are achieving here,” he said. “Today was a disappointing result but look how far we’ve come. The club has been through some dark days and now we’re disappointed at losing to a National League side in the second round of the FA Cup! As I’ve always maintained, this is just the start for us.”

Two scrappy first-half goals gave the physically dominant away team the advantage, with Jordan Williams capitalising on hesitant defending to complete a brace. But it was K’s who played the majority of the football, maintaining 58% possession overall, with Louie Theophanous and Daniel Bennett posing a threat while Sean Clohessy bravely advanced from full-back.

As the second period wore on, K’s kept coming and ought to have had a penalty for handball with 30 minutes remaining. Theophanous then worked the Fylde keeper with a stinging shot. A flurry of corners raised the pressure until Bennett rued his misfortune after failing to make enough contact with a low Dan Hector cross as injury time approached.

In truth, full-time Fylde were well-drilled and looked their two leagues above when pressing the ball, without ever creating too much in front of goal.

The prospect of playing a Premier League side at the next stage of the competition had the Coasters owner label the occasion “a £400,000 game” before kick-off and the clash attracted 1460 fans to a sold-out King George’s Field, the highest K’s home crowd in 18 years.

Bird denied that the size of the occasion had a negative impact on his team, whose epic seven-game FA Cup run since August included wins at Weston-super-Mare, Dartford and League Two Macclesfield. BBC Football Focus was filmed live from the ground from Midday, with Dan Walker interviewing players and fans. “Well, it wasn’t the usual pre-match routine!” Bird conceded. “I wanted the players to enjoy the moment. It was an absolute pleasure to have Walker here and Leon Osman and Clinton Morrison. Ultimately we had to focus on the pitch and it was a great day for the football club.”

It won’t be long before K’s are facing National League opposition again, having been drawn at home to Woking in the Round One of the FA Trophy. Former Kingsmeadow boss Alan Dowson will bring his side to KGF on Sunday 15 December.

In the meantime, there is a swift return to league action, a trip to Folkestone Invicta on Tuesday evening followed by a home match against Merstham this Saturday.