BRAINTREE Town boss Ryan Maxwell admits he was disappointed his side did not claim victory after their 2-2 draw at Billericay Town, writes DAVID WARD.

This was two points lost rather than a point gained for the Iron in the National League South derby at New Lodge on Bank Holiday Monday because they led twice but conceded a second equaliser in the last minute of normal time to end up sharing the spoils before a big crowd of 827.

It was really inexperience that cost Braintree victory so late on because having regained the lead again midway through the second half they should have seen the game out comfortably but they allowed their hosts to snatch a last-gasp equaliser.

Maxwell said: "I'm obviously disappointed because we should have punished them when we had the chances and really have then won the game but in a local derby you are going to get various twists and turns in the game.

"Goals win matches and we should have scored more, particularly in the first half which I felt we dominated.

"They pulled a goal back on 51 minutes so that naturally gave them fresh impetus in the early part of the second half.

"But I felt we had weathered the early storm, scored a cracking second goal and then had two clear cut chances to have scored again which would have really put us completely in the driving seat.

"But many of these lads are still learning the game and also some have come up three or four levels below out league and for most it was their first ever taste of a local derby and quite a challenge.

"But I'm pleased with the overall performance and the way we played and some of the moves were exactly what I wanted and showed how we can play and the potential we have at this level.

"Conceding such a late goal in the last minute is frustrating and we should have done better but we're still unbeaten and we go again this Saturday away to Hungerford Town.

"We want to naturally win every game of course but it doesn't always happen that way and we have to be realistic but I'm more than happy we gained at least a point on the day although I feel we deserved all three.

"Our good performances so far show that we have a good, close knit group of players who want to play for each other and help the club at the same time."

Braintree made one change from the previous game at home to Dorking Wanderers.

Luke Holness dropped to the bench and speedy winger Gianni Crichlow came in from the start and the Iron were certainly the more assertive side in the first half.

Twice striker Femi Akinwande broke clear only to see his efforts charged down at the last moment.

Iron pressure paid off on 29 minutes when Akinwande's fine through pass down the ring wing to Crichlow saw the diminutive winger's cross go straight to Arjanit Krasniqi, who volleyed home from the edge of the penalty spot to give the Iron a deserved lead.

Immediately after half-time Billericay raised their game and on 51 minutes scored a rather fortunate equaliser when the ball ricocheted off a defender in the Iron area and it fell kindly to former Iron striker Norman Wabo who sneaked the ball low into the net.

The Iron retaliated and twice great runs down the right wing by Ezra Ikebuasi saw his crosses zip across the home area with Correy Davidson only inches away from sliding the ball into the net.

Just past the hour an Iron substitution by manager Maxwell proved shrewd because with his first touch of the ball from a Akinwande pass, Luke Holness was left unmarked and slotted the ball into the net to restore the Iron's lead.

On 69 minutes Krasniqi wasted a great chance to have extended the Iron lead and give his side some breathing space.

Akinwande's fine cross found the unmarked midfielder, who fired well over when he should have found the net.

At the other end, the ever-alert Preston Edwards pulled off two fine saves from the home side late on.

But there was little he could do about their second equaliser right on full-time as from an obvious incorrect free-kick given by referee Dean Skipper the hosts launched a high ball across into the area where Wabo was again lurking and needed no time to slip the ball into the net.

Maxwell added: "Everyone knows that when you're winning with only moments to go you should ensure you lock the shop up but on this occasion we didn't yet the players, particularly the less experienced ones will learn from this occasion."

Braintree Town: Edwards; Ikebuasi, Porter, Clements, Pennell; Crichlow, Johnson, Krasniqi, Payne; Davidson (61 Holness - subbed 88 Renee), Akinwanda. UNused subs: Balogun, W Johnson (gk), Hope.