Brightlingsea Regent ended Wingate & Finchley's 6-game winning streak in the league, with a victory that was more comfortable than the 1-0 scoreline suggested. Aaron Condon fired over from the edge of the area with the game's first chance, before Shane Gore was on hand to brilliantly smother Robert Harvey's shot after he had been set free down the left side.
Brightlingsea continued to be the more threatening with a high-tempo game. From a set piece out by the right wing, Richardson had a free header in the six yard box, but somehow headed straight down the middle at Gore. Kelly had the next chance but he fired low and wide of the right post across the goal, though Gore's apparent touch went unspotted by the officials.
The opening goal that the hosts deserved finally arrived in the 58th minute. Tom Richardson led a breakaway through the middle, and used his running start to skip past Gore and roll the ball into an empty net. Brightlingsea were close to doubling the lead when Robbie Rees fired a shot from fully 30 yards, but Gore tipped it onto the top of the crossbar with his fingers.
Ahmet Rifat had Wingate's first attempt at goal, sending a volley from the edge of the area off target, which the keeper needlessly parried behind for a corner. Wingate began to pile on some pressure in the final 15 minutes, with a few goalmouth scrambles. However the ball would not fall their way and the Blues were left with nothing to take back on the long journey home.
Next up for the Blues is a local derby at Harrow Borough on Tuesday night.
Report by Paul Lerman