Jeff King was forced to play this one without Steve Ward at the back or Ty Gooden in the middle. Also missing from the starting line-up was regular defensive stalwart Ben Chenery. Even so, the game got off to a cracking pace and Canvey made several early attempts on James Pullen’s goal, sometimes testing his handling to the embarrassment of team-mates and home fans alike. It was top scorer and golden boot extra-ordinaire Lee Boylan who got the visitors off the mark after 15 minutes, quickly followed by a cracker from in-form Chris Duffy before, eventually, Boyly grabbed a third just before half time. Daryl Bourgeois sneaked one back for Swifts from a set-piece but, truth is, Heybridge were rather lucky to be on the scoresheet at all, so few were their realistic attempts on Danny Potter’s goal.
With Canvey going in at half-time with a lead of 3-1, Yellow Army fans were expecting even greater things in the second half but, just like last week against Maidenhead, the second half turned out to be something of a disappointment for goal aficionados. But for those of us who simply love good, entertaining and dominant football, it was a veritable feast. Whereas the first half saw a goal differential strongly in Canvey’s favour, the single goal difference of the second half might have sent out the wrong message. Believe me, it wasn’t a close second half, it wasn’t down to bad luck or narrow escapes – it was a rout, a drubbing, a mullering. Substitute Junior slotted home the only goal of the half... and I loved it.
Great atmosphere, especially in the second half and loads of laughs. None more so than Swifts No. 7 Jonny Buffong who took so many really bad leg injuries that few of us thought he would ever walk again. The pain and anguish on his face every time he went down (which was almost every time he was tackled) would have had even the hardest of A&E medics wincing. But the Heybridge trainer obviously worked some amazing miracles that would put Jesus’ work with Lazarus to shame. Result? The Oscar nominated defender managed to run around for the rest of the game unscathed. Truly miraculous.
Good bar, good food but surprisingly no Herr Obergreupenfurher in the car park this year to park all the cars in the same corner so they can’t get out. They ran out of programmes at 2:30 which I find surprising. Did they not expect a crowd of 574 in a local derby??? Home fans rather quiet but, in fairness, they may have been drowned out by that bloody trumpet.