Canaries goalkeeper John Ruddy blasted against Nathan Tyson for a bizarre Forest goal after just three minutes, but Grant Holt responded with his 20th goal of the season shortly afterwards to level the match.

Andrew Surman ghosted in behind the Reds defence to complete the comeback after 37 minutes with a clever chip over Lee Camp and put them in the automatic promotion places, they they could slip out again if Cardiff beat Portsmouth tomorrow.

Lambert said: "That was a massive win, as big a result as we have had all season. Forest are a good side, as good as we have seen down here all season, and made it very difficult for us.

"They got an early goal and put us under a lot of pressure in the first half but we hung on and got ourselves in front and played exceptionally well at times.

"We also showed a great desire to go out and win the game. Everything you need to do to win a game of football was there in abundance.

"I'm delighted with the players. They have been absolutely brilliant, especially when you consider they have had to play three games in six days.

"They'll be playing seven in a month and that seems absolutely ridiculous to me. It's far too many, but that's the situation and we've got to get on with it.

"Basically I can't praise the players highly enough. They've been absolutely colossal for me again and they deserve all the praise that comes their way."

Asked about the position at the top of the table Lambert added: "It wasn't about setting a mark, it was about beating a top side and that is what we have done. It's taken us up to second in the table but I can't predict the future.

"If I could I would be down the lottery shop every week buying a ticket. All I can say is that nobody in their right mind would have ever predicted that we would be in this position at this stage of the season."

On Holt, who took his tally for the season up to 22, Lambert said: "I thought he was brilliant, the best player on the pitch, with his hold-up play and his header of course. He was unplayable at times."

Forest manager Billy Davies said: "I thought the attitude and the quality shown by the lads was absolutely top class. It was an excellent performance and quite simply we should have got something out of the game. We were just unlucky on the night.

"We hit the woodwork twice and missed one from six yards - it just wasn't our night, but I can't have any complaints about the way we played. I'm very proud of all the players.

"Unfortunately one player (Guy Moussi) has cost us the two goals. He didn't make his header for the first one and failed to track a run for the second but there is no way I am going to criticise him.

"He has been out for 10 weeks and this is his third game in six days. It was a tough ask but he brings a lot to this side and that's why he was in.

"All we can do now is move on. There is still a chance because it's so tight around the top six, I'd also like to wish my old team-mate Paul Lambert well."