BRIGHTLINGSEA Regent manager Tom Rothery has sung the praises of goalkeeper James Bradbrook - and revealed that some gentle ribbing may have inspired him to save penalties on consecutive Saturdays.

The R's hero followed up his excellent stop at Margate with another crucial save to keep out a Kingstonian penalty in Saturday's 2-0 victory.

It came when the Bostik League premier division clash was still goalless, before second-half goals from Josh Gould and Michael Brothers wrapped up an important victory at the Taydal Stadium.

“Having faced five or six penalties since coming here, Bradders hasn’t got near any of them," laughed Rothery.

“He’s been excellent but just hasn’t been able to save penalties.

“(Kitman) Alan Wright even took one against him in training and beat him.

“I was taking the mickey out of him and got inside his head.

“I joked that he might as well come out of goal and let them roll the ball into an empty net.

“But since I said that, he’s saved two penalties on consecutive weekends.

“Saturday’s was a great save but the one the previous week was unbelievable, down to his bottom left-hand corner.

“It’s funny how things work out."

Play-off chasing Brightlingsea are six points adrift of the top five following Saturday's victory.

They will be determined to enhance their position with another home game next weekend, against Harlow Town.

And Rothery will be hoping they produce a similar performance to the one they served up against Kingstonian.

“It’s always difficult playing a team with a new manager, especially when they bring in six new players," he said.

“I always do my research on the opposition but didn’t know much about them.

“However, it was about us.

“We worked really hard and were excellent in terms of both first and second balls.

“We made it really difficult for them to get the ball down and play.

“Once we went ahead, they went very direct and I thought we dealt with that well, while at the same time causing problems going forward.

“It was a was a really mature performance and shows how far we’ve come in the last 12 to 18 months.

“Kingstonian are a massive club but we were deserving winners.

“We stuck with a positive formation and got out rewards."