MALDON AND TIPTREE were the big winners on a pivotal day of Bostik League action.

The Jammers, second in division north, closed the gap on leaders Bowers and Pitsea – without a fixture on Saturday – to three points after a 3-0 success at home to Bury Town.

Former Colchester United man Matthew Briggs set them on the road to victory ten minutes before half-time and further goals followed from Jorome Slew and another ex-U’s player, Billy Roast.

It was a great result for Wayne Brown’s men but a day of markedly contrasting fortunes for near neighbours and play-off rivals HEYBRIDGE SWIFTS, who lost by the same score at Felixstowe and Walton United.

Jordan Matthews netted in the third minute as Julian Dicks’ side got off to the worst possible start and more goals followed from Josh Kerridge and Rhys Henry.

Swifts stay fourth but are now three points behind both Maldon and Aveley, who were 2-1 winners at Canvey Island.

Fifth-placed COGGESHALL TOWN have also closed the gap on them after a 1-0 success at Grays Athletic.

Michael Gyasi notched the only goal of the game on the stroke of half-time.

Elsewhere in division north, WITHAM TOWN suffered a blow after losing 2-0 at home to Tilbury.

Mark Ashford’s men have turned their season around in recent weeks but suffered an off-day after conceding goals in either half from Tom Anderson and Kris Newby.

Tilbury’s Darren Phillips was sent off just before the hour-mark but it did not have any impact on the destination of the points.

In the premier division, BRIGHTLINGSEA REGENT roared back to winning ways with an excellent 3-0 victory at home to basement boys Whitehawk.

All the goals came in the second half, with two in the latter stages.

Billy Jones got the ball rolling before Billy Hunt notched twice, in the 77th and 88th minutes.

It was a great result for play-off chasing Regent, after the disappointment of their home defeat against Worthing and then conceded a late penalty in last week’s 2-2 draw at Wingate and Finchley.

They moved up a place in the table to tenth but remain three points away from the top five.

Overall, it was a great day for Maldon, Coggeshall and Regent and a disappointing one for Swifts and Witham.

However, the Gazette’s award for star performance surely has to go to the on-song Jammers.

Bury are sixth in the table, also pushing for promotion, so to beat them comprehensively was a great achievement.

There could be more twists and turns in the division north promotion race this week.

Maldon travel to AFC Sudbury on Tuesday night while Swifts return to the Aspen Waite Arena for a home match against Basildon United.

Witham, 16th in the table, cross the Suffolk border for a match at Bury.