HEYBRIDGE Swifts secured the local bragging rights by completing the double over neighbours Maldon and Tiptree with a 1-0 win in the Easter Monday derby, writes JON LONGMAN.

But the Swifts needed harsh half-time words from manager Steve Tilson to defy the threat posed by the Jammers who had excellent chances to atone for losing to the Swifts in December.

The visitors can consider themselves unlucky not to have picked up at least a point as the first-half inspiration of former Swifts midfield dynamo Harrison ChattIng threatened to stop the Swifts adding to their 3-1 away win.

Veteran midfielder Lee Noble’s promptings after the interval words of warning from Tilson and the assist for the winner saw the Swifts step up several gears following a dire opening half.

Swifts keeper Noah Phillips had to snuff out two excellent shots from Hakeem Sandah and Louis Britten should have netted an excellent cross from Matthew Yates with a free header five minutes before the break.

Britten could have set the Jammers on the road to a memorable win after the break when he was given a gift opportunity but shot straight at Phillips.

However, the writing was on for the Jammers as their former centre forward Ross Wall played a key role in setting up the 60th minute winner for Myles Anderson’s second goal of the season.

Wall’s tenacity in the aerial battles assisted in setting up Rob Bagnell to force a fine diving save from Jammers keeper Luca Collins.


Noble delivered the resultant corner and Anderson stabbed the ball past Collins for his second of the season, cueing a massive celebration with the Swifts fans behind the goal in the season’s best crowd of 582.

Rob Harvey then hit the far post after he had accelerated down the right flank with the Swifts going all out to secure a second.

Former Brightlingsea and Walthamstow striker Eman Okunja, who had replaced Kieran Jones ten minutes after the break, marked a lively debut with a yellow card after a late spat with Chatting.

Tilson was a relieved manager after the derby victory that extended Swifts unbeaten run to six games saying: “They were better of the first half. I thought we were much better in the second when we had the better chances and won 1-0.

“I was glad to go in at half time at 0-0 and I had to give them a little bit of a moan before we went out for the second half.

“We showed much more intensity when Eman came on and we created three or four good chances outside the one we did score.

“Lee Noble was outstanding. He was absolutely fantastic and again the back four did not put a foot wrong with another clean sheet giving us a platform to go on and win the game.

“That’s six unbeaten now and it’s a massive ask to reach the play-offs. We need to win our last five games and hope that other teams drop points.

“But listen, whether we reach the play-offs or not, we will go out to win every game and see where that leaves us at the end of the season.”