BRAINTREE Town succumbed to a 2-1 home defeat to a strong Maidstone United side in National League South, writes RON FOSKER.

Iron were mostly confident at the back and had some spark in midfield but their lack of both inches and muscles was very evident at the other end of the pitch, where the lofty and sturdy visiting back line was rarely troubled.

Manager Angelo Harrop sprang a surprise by leaving out much-heralded new striker Nnamdi Nwachuku after only two matches and reshuffled his pack to bring skipper John White into an unusual right wing-back position with Leon Davies moving into midfield.

The manager had had second thoughts by half-time and brought Nwachuku back at White’s expense to try to compensate for the lack of thrust up front.

Braintree and Witham Times:

Little changed and Iron can have no complaints about the result.

Both attacks were fairly impotent in the first half hour but then a cracking shot out of the blue from Sam Bone left Jack Sims clutching at the air as the ball entered the net via the far post.

Iron drew level two minutes after the interval with a goal that was almost a carbon copy of their winner against Truro Town, on Saturday.

As then, Sam Blackwell swung the ball over, from a free kick rather than a corner this time, and a Braintree defender, Harry Beadle not Kyran Clements this time, crept up on the blind side to head the ball into the net.

Braintree and Witham Times:

The game opened up in the second half as Maidstone became ever more threatening.

Their winner came when ex-Iron Sam Corne found himself unmarked in the box and stroked the ball home.

Braintree Town: Jack Sims; John White (Nnamdi Nwachuku 46), Joe Grimwood, Kyran Clements, Harry Beadle, Toby Stevenson; Leon Davies, Alfie Payne (Josh Dawodu 78), Reggie Lambe (George Quantrell 67); Tom Blackwell, Will Davies