After victories for; Harlow Town over Thurrock, AFC Sudbury over Tilbury, and a massive win for Heybridge Swifts over relegation rivals Wroxham.
We’ll start this Ryman North roundup near the bottom. Heybridge Swifts continue their superb run of recent results with a 1-0 well hard fought victory over Wroxham. Who unfortunately for Wroxham haven’t won in the Ryman North since the 10th of October, which is a run of 17 matches without victory. It doesn’t get any easier for the Norfolk based side who now have to travel on midweek matches to Harlow Town, the Millers and Haringey Borough which equals 712 mile round trip for a Ryman North club on a shoestring budget, threatened by relegation, don’t think it gets tougher than that.
However, for their opponents on Tuesday Night, Heybridge Swifts make it four matches unbeaten with three wins, including progressing the last four of the Essex Senior Cup after beating us 3-2. In the league now they sit much healthier, after great results against Cray Wanderers and Wroxham, which now puts the Swifts six points clear of the bottom three. However the Swifts have played one more than Redbridge and Barkingside, 22nd and 24th respectively, and have played two more than Waltham Abbey who sit in-between the Motormen and ‘Side in 23rd place.
It was a good night for Bury Town and Brightlingsea Regent as they start to close the gap on the playoff places. Bury Town defeated Redbridge just about after three goals in the 87, 90 and 90+2 to eventually win 4-1, over the relegation threatened club. Redbridge will be annoyed at this result and would now feel like Wroxham did at the weekend when Redbridge scored two goals in the dying seconds to win 4-3 up in Norfolk.
For Brightlingsea Regent, four second half goals helped them dismantle Witham Town. Regent are now on the verge of the playoffs now only three points off of 5th placed Cray Wanderers, with a game in hand too, Brightlingsea have a superb chance to gate crash the playoffs near the end of the season if they can keep up this recent good form.
Down the other end of the table, Witham Town seemed to have recovered their form enough to pull themselves away from the bottom three, but still are looking over their shoulder as they are only eight points clear of third bottom Redbridge.
It was also a busy night inside the playoffs with AFC Hornchurch taking on mid-table Maldon & Tiptree, they led with young Urchin Alex Bentley got Hornchurch with a chance of winning the match with 15 minutes to go. But they couldn’t hold on as the Jammers equalised with five minutes remaining.
Two play off placed teams also went head to head with Thurrock hosting Harlow Town. The title balance seemed to swing one way with their fantastic 4-0 win at table toppers AFC Sudbury, but they were brought back to earth after defeat to Harlow Town on Tuesday night.
Harlow Town have been sneaky this year, and have gone under the radar. I think Harlow Town with the games in hand must be considered as the title favourites, 9 wins on the trot in the Ryman North too, they must now be seen as the direct rivals to win the Ryman North this season after the last two seasons where they just missed out.