HEYBRIDGE SWIFTS were the big winners on another afternoon of twists and turns in the Bostik League.

Not in terms of their scoreline but by virtue of the fact they won and their play-off rivals all dropped points.

MALDON AND TIPTREE and Aveley both lost while COGGESHALL TOWN drew.

It leaves Swifts third in division north – just a point behind the Jammers – after a 3-1 victory at home to Romford.

Elliott Ronto gave them an early lead but the visitors drew level from the penalty spot through Reece Hewitt.

However, Heybridge’s nerves were settled by a late brace from substitute Matthew Price.

Both goals came in the last nine minutes, with his second from the spot.

The significance of the victory was heightened by the fact Maldon dropped points at Felixstowe and Walton United, losing 3-2.

Matthew Briggs’ early goal gave them a dream start in the fifth minute but things unravelled from there after an own goal at the other end, inadvertently scored by Ben McNamara.

Jack Ainsley put the Suffolk side ahead with a penalty just before half-time and Liam Hillyard pounced on the hour-mark to make it 3-1.

Maldon threw themselves a lifeline with a late second from Laste Dombaxe.

However, it was not enough to prevent a costly defeat.

So Maldon are second, Swifts third and Coggeshall fourth after a 2-2 draw at Great Wakering Rovers.

Conor Hubble cancelled out Firmin Ngandu’s goal on the stroke of half-time but Shomari Barnwell restored Wakering’s lead.

Nnamdi Nwachuku buried a late penalty but the Seedgrowers had to settle for a point – perhaps not a bad result given they had been reduced to ten men late in the first half following a red card for George Cocklin.

For the record, Aveley’s defeat came at the hands of Tilbury, 3-1, while runaway leaders Bowers and Pitsea pipped Soham Town Rangers 1-0.

At the other end of the table, Zack Littlejohn’s grabbed a last-gasp winner as Canvey Island snatched a 1-0 victory at WITHAM TOWN.

BRIGHTLINGSEA REGENT were unable to put a spanner in the works of premier division leaders Dorking Wanderers, losing 2-0 at the Taydal Stadium.

The league’s runaway leaders netted in each half, with Jason Prior’s penalty being followed by a late second from Tom Richards.

To rub salt into their wounds, Regent were also reduced to ten men followed the sending-off of striker Billy Hunt.

Guiseppe Sole saw red for the visitors ten minutes later.

So it was one of those weekends when there was only one contender for our star performance award.

Heybridge were our only winners but, in addition to the result, deserve credit for the way they responded to the setback of conceding a late equaliser, scoring two more to wrap up an important victory.