BRAINTREE TOWN suffered a dramatic blow in their quest to avoid relegation from Vanarama National League South.

The Iron were hoping to build on last week’s 2-0 victory against Bath City but instead suffered a heartbreaking 2-1 defeat at Essex rivals Billericay Town.

Connor Shields gave the hosts an early lead but Liam Smyth equalised midway through the second half for George Borg's men.

Billericay’s Dejon Noel-Williams was sent off in the closing seconds before Ronnie Henry grabbed a last-gasp winner in the 94th minute.

Braintree are fourth from bottom and a point above the relegation zone.

Elsewhere, BRIGHTLINGSEA REGENT are bottom of the BetVictor Isthmian League premier division after losing 1-0 at Cray Wanderers.

Joseph Taylor scored the only goal in the ninth minute.

In division north, leaders MALDON AND TIPTREE enhanced their title chances with a 1-0 victory at Histon.

Jake Cass came up trumps with the winner deep in the second half.

HEYBRIDGE SWIFTS are third but suffered a blow after losing 1-0 at home to Cambridge City.

Luke Knight scored the only goal just before the hour-mark.

COGGESHALL TOWN are sixth, a place outside the play-offs, but were left without a game following the postponement of their match at home to Romford.

WITHAM TOWN’S home match against AFC Sudbury was also called off, because of a waterlogged pitch at the Village Glass Stadium.

STANWAY ROVERS are third in the Thurlow Nunn League premier division after winning 2-1 at home to Kirkley and Pakefield.

Darren Mills and Jamie Shaw scored for Danny Slatter's side.

BRANTHAM ATHLETIC won by the same score at home to Wroxham – Joss Neale netted both goals - but FC CLACTON lost 1-0 at Godmanchester Rovers.

The first division south derby between WIVENHOE TOWN and LITTLE OAKLEY was postponed but has already been rearranged for March 24.

HOLLAND FC thrashed Newbury Park 4-1 while HARWICH AND PARKESTON warmed up for Wednesday’s First Division Knockout Cup semi-final against Oakley with a 2-1 win at Fire United.

Hayden Dutch and Sean Bartlett scored for the Shrimpers.

BRIGHTLINGSEA REGENT RESERVES lost 4-3 at home to Wormley Rovers.

HALSTEAD TOWN did not have a weekend fixture but had been due to visit Fire on Thursday night.

However, the match was postponed because of a waterlogged pitch.