Vanarama National League South
East Thurrock United 2 v 0 Chelmsford City
EAST Thurrock established a lead with two early goals then fought a superb rearguard action to take the honours in this hard-fought Essex derby.
Ben Marlow headed them ahead inside the first minute and then Sam Higgins broke away and converted from a narrow angle in the 21st minute.
Cue a Chelmsford revival and they laid virtual siege to the home goal but found centrebacks Steve Sheehan and Ryan Scott in indomitable mood and when they were beaten first keeper Jack Giddens with a great save from Tom Wraight and then Lee Burns, with a spectacular goalline clearance kept the Clarets at bay.
Higgins almost scored the goal of the season with a speculative effort from the centre circle that beat keeper Ashley Maynard-Brewer but bounced back off the crossbar.
The second half was virtually one way traffic but Rocks defended superbly, showing tremendous spirit and working as a unit to clear their lines time and time again.
Being picky, you could say Chelmsford lacked the guile to create a clear opening but credit the defence – sometimes games are won at the back rather than the front and this was one such occasion where Rocks thoroughly deserved the win and climbed off the bottom of the table.
Rocks return to league action on Tuesday evening, away at Oxford City.